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Viasat Consumer and Canal Digital partner on distribution joint venture

Telenor and NENT Group will each hold 50 per cent of the new company

Swedish streaming company Nordic Entertainment Group is to combine its Viasat Consumer satellite pay-TV and broadband TV operations with Telenor Group’s Norwegian satellite TV unit Canal Digital to form a 50-50 regional television distribution joint venture.

According to the two companies, the new venture will create a scaled, simpler and streamlined content venture in Scandinavia.

The JV is expected to have combined sales of 7 billion Norwegian crowns ($766 million) and about 1.257 million subscribers. The combined company will be headquartered in Stockholm and Oslo and the boards of directors will have equal representations from Nordic Entertainment and Telenor, with a rotating chairmanship.

Current Canal Digital CEO Bjørn Ivar Moen will be CEO of the JV, Viasat Consumer CEO Jonas Gustafsson will be CFO and head of operations. The deal is expected to close in the first half of next year.

“Combining Viasat Consumer and Canal Digital makes perfect sense,” Nordic Entertainment Group CEO Anders Jensen said. “We are creating a large-scale TV operator that will create sustainable value for customers and owners, and be able to compete with large-scale regional and local competitors.”