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CRTC approves Shaw’s purchase of the Canwest Global television properties

OTTAWA-GATINEAU, October 22, 2010 — The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) today approved Shaw Communications Inc.’s (Shaw’s) acquisition of the conventional television stations and specialty channels controlled by Canwest Global Communications Corp. (Canwest Global).

“We are satisfied that this transaction will generate substantial benefits for the Canadian broadcasting system,” said Konrad von Finckenstein, Q.C., Chairman of the CRTC. “Shaw will provide the television properties involved in the transaction with stable ownership as they emerge from a period of uncertainty. The broadcasting system also stands to gain from Shaw’s commitment to support local and independent programming and the transition to digital television.”

As part of any ownership transaction in the broadcasting sector, the buyer is expected to make specific commitments to fund initiatives that will improve the Canadian broadcasting system. In this case, the CRTC took into consideration the fact that the Global Television Network and certain specialty channels were operating under bankruptcy protection.

As a result, it has accepted Shaw’s proposal to spend $180.1 million over the next seven years to:

  • support the transition to digital television by converting 67 analog transmitters in smaller markets to digital
  • provide and install a satellite receiver and dish, at no charge, to viewers who lose access to the over-the-air signals of their local or regional television stations as of August 31, 2011, as well as free satellite access to those signals
  • produce new two-hour morning newscasts in Regina, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal and Halifax
  • purchase more drama, documentary and comedy programs from independent producers, and
  • invest in new media content that will support news programming and programs of national interest

During the proceeding, Shaw also promised to make the rights to its television programming available to its competitors for broadcast on mobile devices and over the Internet.

Today’s decision follows a public proceeding that included a public hearing, which was held from September 21 to 23, 2010.

In addition, the CRTC today also launched a public proceeding to study the wider implications of the growing number of integrated media companies in the Canadian broadcasting system. The proceeding will include a public hearing starting on May 9, 2011, in Gatineau, Que.

 

Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2010-782

Broadcasting Notice of Consultation CRTC 2010-783

The CRTC

The CRTC is an independent public authority that regulates and supervises broadcasting and telecommunications in Canada.

Reference document:

News release, “CRTC provides update on the transition to digital television,” July 16, 2010

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These documents are available in alternative format upon request.


Additional information on the Shaw/Canwest Global transaction

Key dates

October 6, 2009

Canwest Global files for creditor protection under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act

November 2009

Canwest Global initiates a process to identify potential Canadian investors for its television properties

February 19, 2010

Canwest Global’s board approves Shaw’s offer to purchase a 20% equity and 80% voting interest

March 31, 2010

Shaw files an application with the CRTC, asking it to approve its purchase of the Canwest Global television properties

May 3, 2010

Shaw acquires 29.9% of the voting shares and 49.9% of the non-voting shares in Canwest Investments Co. from Goldman Sachs & Co.

May 4, 2010

Shaw files an amendment to its initial application with the CRTC

May 18, 2010

Canwest Global files an application with the CRTC to effect a corporate reorganization

July 28, 2010

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice approves Canwest’s “Plan of Compromise, Arrangement and Reorganization”

September 21, 2010

The CRTC holds a three-day public hearing in Calgary, Alta., to review the transaction

October 22, 2010

The CRTC approves the transaction

 

Specialty television channels

Shaw Communications Inc. has acquired the following specialty channels:

Type of licence

Specialty service

Analog

Food Network Canada

HGTV Canada

Historia

History Television

Série+

Showcase

Slice  

TVtropolis

Category 1

The Cave (minority interest)

Discovery Health Network

Independent Film Channel

Mystery

ONE: The Body, Mind and Spirit Channel (minority interest)

Category 2

BBC Canada

BBC Kids

DejaView

D.I.Y. Network

Dusk (minority interest)

Fine Living

Fox Sports World Canada

Movie Time

National Geographic Channel

Reality TV

Showcase Action

Showcase Diva

 

Conventional television stations

Shaw Communications Inc. has acquired the following conventional television stations:

Province

Stations

Transmitters

Alberta

CICT-TV Calgary

CICT-DT Calgary
(digital transmitter)

CICT-TV-1 Drumheller

CICT-TV-2 Banff

CITV-TV Edmonton

CITV-DT Edmonton
(digital transmitter)

CITV-TV-1 Red Deer

CISA-TV Lethbridge

CISA-DT Lethbridge
(digital transmitter)

CISA-TV-1 Burmis

CISA-TV-2 Brooks

CISA-TV-3 Coleman

CISA-TV-4 Waterton Park

CISA-TV-5 Pincher Creek

British Columbia

CHKM-TV Kamloops

CHKM-TV-1 Pritchard

CHBC-TV Kelowna

CHBC-TV-1 Penticton

CHBC-TV-2 Vernon

CHBC-TV-3 Oliver

CHBC-TV-4 Salmon Arm

CHBC-TV-5 Enderby

CHBC-TV-6 Celista

CHBC-TV-7 Skaha Lake

CHBC-TV-8 Canoe

CHBC-TV-9 Apex Mountain

CHRP-TV-2 Revelstoke

CHKL-TV Kelowna

CHKL-TV-1 Penticton

CHKL-TV-2 Vernon

CHKL-TV-3 Revelstoke

CKKM-TV Oliver/Osoyoos

CISR-TV Santa Rosa

CISR-TV-1 Grand Forks

CKTN-TV Trail

CKTN-TV-1 Castlegar

CKTN-TV-2 Taghum

CKTN-TV-3 Nelson

CKTN-TV-4 Creston

CIFG-TV Prince George

 

CHAN-TV Vancouver

CHAN-DT Vancouver
(digital transmitter)

CHAN-TV-1 Chilliwack

CHAN-TV-2 Bowen Island

CHAN-TV-3 Squamish

CHAN-TV-4 Courtenay

CHAN-TV-5 Brackendale

CHAN-TV-6 Wilson Creek

CHAN-TV-7 Whistler

CITM-TV 100 Mile House

CITM-TV-1 Williams Lake

CITM-TV-2 Quesnel

Manitoba

CKND-TV Winnipeg

CKND-DT Winnipeg
(digital transmitter)

CKND-TV-2 Minnedosa

New Brunswick

CIHF-TV-2 Saint John

CIHF-DT-2 Saint John
(digital transmitter)

CIHF-TV-1 Fredericton

CIHF-DT-1 Fredericton
(digital transmitter)

CIHF-TV-3 Moncton

CIHF-DT-3 Moncton
(digital transmitter)

CIHF-TV-11 Woodstock

CIHF-TV-12 St. Stephen

CIHF-TV-13 Miramichi

CIHF-TV-14 Charlottetown (P.E.I.)

CIHF-DT-14 Charlottetown (P.E.I.)
(digital transmitter)

Nova Scotia

CIHF-TV Halifax

CIHF-DT Halifax
(digital transmitter)

CIHF-TV-4 Truro

CIHF-TV-5 Wolfville

CIHF-TV-6 Bridgewater

CIHF-TV-7 Sydney

CIHF-TV-8 New Glasgow

CIHF-TV-9 Shelburne

CIHF-TV-10 Yarmouth

CIHF-TV-15 Antigonish

CIHF-TV-16 Mulgrave

Ontario

CIII-TV-41 Toronto

CIII-DT-41 Toronto
(digital transmitter)

CIII-TV Paris

CIII-DT Paris
(digital transmitter)

CIII-TV-2 Bancroft

CIII-TV-4 Owen Sound

CIII-TV-6 Ottawa

CIII-DT-6 Ottawa
(digital transmitter)

CIII-TV-7 Midland

CIII-TV-12 Sault Ste-Marie

CIII-TV-13 Timmins

CIII-TV-22 Stevenson

CIII-DT-22 Stevenson
(digital transmitter)

CIII-TV-27 Peterborough

CIII-TV-29 Oil Springs

CIII-TV-55 Fort Erie

CFGC-TV Sudbury

CFGC-TV-2 North Bay

Quebec

CKMI-TV-1 Montreal

CKMI-DT-1 Montreal
(digital transmitter)

CKMI-TV Quebec

CKMI-DT Quebec
(digital transmitter)

CKMI-TV-2 Sherbrooke

CKMI-DT-2 Sherbrooke
(digital transmitter)

Saskatchewan

CFRE-TV Regina

CFRE-DT Regina
(digital transmitter)

CFRE-TV-2 Fort Qu’Appelle

CFSK-TV Saskatoon