The entry of Sweden’s Telia into TV broadcasting was welcomed in Finland as the Nordic telecom operator announced its purchase of Swedish group Bonnier Broadcasting, the parent company of Finnish TV channel MTV.
Some analysts expected the deal to increase the chances of survival for MTV that has been losing money for years. MTV received last year a unique 3-million-euro state subsidy in order to to be able to continue producing “quality news” as an alternative to the Finnish state owned YLE.
Jarkko Nordlund, CEO of MTV, welcomed the opportunities the change of ownership of the channel will open up. Nordlund noted that “watching television” is moving increasingly to mobile gadgets.
Both Nordlund and Telia CEO Johan Dennelind underlined the need to produce domestic content in the competition against global players such as Netflix.
Meanwhile, representatives of MTV staff unions were cautiously optimistic.
The purchase of Bonnier Broadcasting services in Sweden and Finland came only a few days after Telia had announced the purchase in Norway of the GET and TDC Norway from the Danish TDC. Telia has now mobile, fixed-line and TV operations in all seven Nordic and Baltic markets.
Commercial television started in Finland in the mid 1950s, decades before Sweden. MTV — short of Mainostelevisio — is the oldest commercial television company still in business in the Nordic area.