19th APDC Congress – PT and Zon exchange accusations about conditions of access to TV content

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The theme of the contents is at the center of the debate of the State of the Nation that every year marks the last afternoon of the Communications Congress. Zeinal Bava, president of Portugal Telecom, reiterated at the event the criticisms of the difficulties imposed by Zon in access, under competitive conditions, to the content that feed the offers of pay TV.

Rodrigo Costa refuted the accusations and guaranteed that the company never maintained a policy of denying access to the content. «We treat our competitors with respect because they are also our customers», underlined the company’s president, which resulted from a spin off of Portugal Telecom. The official also assured that many of the contracts – access to content – currently in force «were signed by who today is our customer» and said he did not understand PT’s accounts regarding the weight of the content paid to Zon, which in his accounts would be higher to the revenue generated at your content company, responsible for managing the business.

PT materialized the accusations and ensured that the problem is not only in terms of access to content, in the sense of obtaining or not marketing the company’s channels, but also in the way they are available for sale to competitors. «The issue is not only about access, prices are a fundamental factor», defends Bava.

PT guarantees to pay Zon a content bill of 34 million euros annually, which means that one third of the total content bill is «paid to a direct competitor», he continues, adding that the value has an impact on the ability to develop offers competitive.

The exchange of accusations also focused on other aspects, with Rogrigo Costa questioning PT’s ability in a short period of time to have managed to capture a 22 percent share in the pay TV market, data presented this week by the company, taking into account the difficulty accessing content and ensuring that it is not, between the two companies, the one with the most exclusive channels, compared to the other’s offer. Zon has 35 channels that PT does not have and PT will have 39 channels that Zon does not offer, had already detailed another responsible person of the company during the morning.

The subject of content had already been discussed during the morning in the Congress, in the panel dedicated to regulation, with Zon’s competitors, especially PT, arguing that Anacom should be called upon to regulate this area as well.

In the State of the Nation, Zon also once again denied the possibility of merging with Sonaecom. Rodrigo Costa reiterated that the company is analyzing the business opportunities that are emerging, but that it has not had conversations with Sonaecom on this topic. «Time will tell what will happen,» said Rodrigo Costa, ensuring that, for now, the topic does not occupy his day-to-day life.