SFR Group of France to launch new 4K content channel in European market

by on April 28, 2016

Stephan Jukic – April 28, 2016

SFR Group has confirmed that it will be launching five new sports channels for the European market and that one of these channels: one a premium service, one dedicated to multiple-interest sportscasts, another for extreme sports, one for sports news –which will be operated by NextRadio TV—and finally, one channel for 4K sports events. All of these new channels will be launching in June of this year and the sport channels will not simply have exclusivity to SFR subscribers since the will be distributed across other platforms on the European market.

SFR, which has been renamed recently as the SFR Group, is also in exclusive negotiations to buy up Altice Media Group France, which owns more than 20 national media titles on the French market and also happens to own 49% of the NextRadioTV service. This group furthermore operates a range of media brands which include services like BFMTV, RMC and RMC Sport, along with BMF Business and, all on the French market.

The proposed transaction between SFR Group and Altice gives NextRadioTV a valuation at roughly €741 million (a little over $1 billion USD) and also values Altice Media Group France at roughly €241 million.

SFR has also announced the acquisition of Dustin Hoffman’s SVoD series “Medici” for their Zive content service, and this series will also apparently be broadcast in 4K resolution to French subscribers.

Dustin Hoffman's "Medici" may be one of the content selections for SFR's 4K SVoD channel

Dustin Hoffman’s “Medici” may be one of the content selections for SFR’s 4K SVoD channel

Overall, while this new entry of one more 4K content service on the European market is not a major piece of news, it does represent an example of the further standardization and inclusion of 4K media streaming and broadcasting to a growing number of mainstream broadcasting and media service companies. 4K content, which is sent to viewers with 4K ultra HD TVs in their homes or offices, is much larger in terms of data transfer needs than conventional Full HD video content and thus the growth of 4K in the mainstream broadcast market has been notably slow in the last three years since 4K TV sales became widespread.

However, despite these difficulties, broadcasters like SFR and other major companies in all larger markets around the world have taken a larger interest in 4K media and content due to the obvious growth trends in the 4K display device market, which now also includes high dynamic range content along with 4K resolution.

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