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Neil Jones4,892 posts since 23 Dec 2001
Central (West) Midlands Today
Think it was documented somewhere TVS's prediction was not too wide of the mark as things panned out.

Maybe this is pure conjecture but had TVS pitched three regional news programmes the outcome may not have been any different even though they did bid higher than Meridian. I dare say it would have been the same even if they'd pitched 100 regional news programmes.
62305823,190 posts since 19 Aug 2005
STV Central Reporting Scotland
I still think if TVS had gotten through, Its would have been merged with LWT pretty quickly and Southampton shut rather fast, News operations merged into LNN to cover the whole of the south east, playout moved to Kent house and many managers at TVS sacked. Maybe just maybe a new LWT/TVS Satellite channel might have come about.
Is the next post dreaded?
Neil Jones4,892 posts since 23 Dec 2001
Central (West) Midlands Today
When was it decided that there would be another franchise auction after this one and what was the justification?


The licences were originally for ten years and should have expired in 2003 but the 1990 Broadcasting Act changed the rules so a company could reapply in advance before expiry to get ten years from then which may explain why they were due for refreshment/renewal in 1998/1999 or whenever it was when the Channel 4 legacy funding arrangements expired. Indeed all the various licences had staggered expiry dates by the time ITV plc came along.

So in other words, an auction on the scale of 1991 is probably never going to happen.
JamesM0984
Central (East) East Midlands Today
What's the situation now? Could the licenses theoretically be challenged, although to be competitive or commercially viable outside of ITV Plc is going to be tough - yes STV are still doing that, but they have an entire nation in terms of scale.
Inspector Sands13,144 posts since 25 Aug 2004
I still think if TVS had gotten through, Its would have been merged with LWT pretty quickly and Southampton shut rather fast, News operations merged into LNN to cover the whole of the south east, playout moved to Kent house and many managers at TVS sacked. Maybe just maybe a new LWT/TVS Satellite channel might have come about.

They might have ended up as one company at some point, but not until TVS either slimmed down, or got into serious financial issues. LWT was a very thriving business at the time, they wouldn't have wanted to be burdened with the liabilities that TVS had.


As for news, that's unlikely. In those days local news was still valued in itv and was expanding. There would still have been seperate news services and still seperate news operations in the South.

Plonking the south in with LNN would have been problematic, remember it wasn't purely LWTs, whoever the weekday licensee was would have had a say over that.

As for a satellite channel, that's just fantasy
Neil Jones4,892 posts since 23 Dec 2001
Central (West) Midlands Today
What's the situation now? Could the licenses theoretically be challenged, although to be competitive or commercially viable outside of ITV Plc is going to be tough - yes STV are still doing that, but they have an entire nation in terms of scale.


I believe that there could potentially be a repeat of the 1991 auction style if ITV plc handed back all their licences or they deliberately don't renew them when they're due to expire. However there is probably more chance of hell freezing over/finding the Loch Ness Monster/finding life on Mars.
62305823,190 posts since 19 Aug 2005
STV Central Reporting Scotland
I still think if TVS had gotten through, Its would have been merged with LWT pretty quickly and Southampton shut rather fast, News operations merged into LNN to cover the whole of the south east, playout moved to Kent house and many managers at TVS sacked. Maybe just maybe a new LWT/TVS Satellite channel might have come about.

They might have ended up as one company at some point, but not until TVS either slimmed down, or got into serious financial issues. LWT was a very thriving business at the time, they wouldn't have wanted to be burdened with the liabilities that TVS had.


As for news, that's unlikely. In those days local news was still valued in itv and was expanding. There would still have been seperate news services and still seperate news operations in the South.

Plonking the south in with LNN would have been problematic, remember it wasn't purely LWTs, whoever the weekday licensee was would have had a say over that.

As for a satellite channel, that's just fantasy


I do think we would all agree as soon as TVS won the knives and axes would be out and everything would be out for the chop,

You can't say for certain a satellite channel, is just fantasy, its mooted before this time period and its finally come in with Granada a few years later. It would at least put to work the archive.
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Riaz gave kudos
Riaz561 posts since 6 Jan 2016
And not forgetting the original awarded contracts were for a period between 1982 to 1990 before they got extended so was very risky what TVS was doing


TVS bit off more than they could chew with MTM...

The trouble was that TVS was an ambitious company but they were seen as an outsider by the big 5 despite having one of the best (either 3rd or 4th) regions for advertising revenue. The difficulty TVS faced in obtaining time slots for networked programmes encouraged them to seek business ventures outside of ITV including MTM. At the time of purchasing MTM the TVS management assumed that this would be a business venture equal in size, or larger, than being an ITV contractor for the south and south east.

If Meridian did not apply then would the ITC have (reluctantly?) awarded the south and south east region to CPV or would they have awarded it to Carlton, and Thames survived, or would Carlton have been awarded both the London weekday and south and south east regions?
Interceptor747 posts since 20 Oct 2014
What if the TVS/MTM situation had been the other way around, and MTM tried to buy TVS? Would that have required not only ITC/IBA approval, but perhaps also a reletting of the franchise?

It's a pretty crazy suggestion. If the IBA had a problem with a takeover (and *any* takeover or significant share purchase would have been subject to their approval) that would likely sink the purchase, even if the company being taken over was some huge outfit like Granada (even though they had massive interests outside of television).


If for some reason MTM were determined to own whatever else TVS had, then I suggest TVS would have split off the bits they could buy in to a separate entity. It's very hard to foresee a profitable franchisee in the massively profitable effective duopoly years willingly giving up their franchise so they can hold on to both their troublesome owners and Motormouth.
Neil Jones4,892 posts since 23 Dec 2001
Central (West) Midlands Today
If Meridian did not apply then would the ITC have (reluctantly?) awarded the south and south east region to CPV or would they have awarded it to Carlton, and Thames survived, or would Carlton have been awarded both the London weekday and south and south east regions?


I think we agreed before that the end result of a single ITV was going to happen regardless of who won what. The avenues we would have gone down may have been different but the ultimate end result was going to be the same.

'reluctantly' is probably the wrong verb. CPV made a grave error in their application because they were dependent on TV-am after 1993 and had no provision for what they were going to do if TV-am didn't make it through so it was probably arrogance on their part to do that. It also went to prove that just because the previous prime minister loved you wasn't a guarantee you'd live.