Eastern Home Shopping & Leisure Co (EHS, 東森購物) said it officially withdrew five shopping channels from Taiwan Optical Platform Co (TOP, 台灣數位光訊) effective yesterday, affecting 330,000 subscribers in southern Taiwan.
“The 330,000 TOP subscribers in Taichung, Nantou, Yunlin and Changhua will not be able to watch EHS’ shopping channels from today [yesterday],” the TV shopping operator said in a statement.
EHS said that the two companies could not reach a consensus over channel listing fees, which led to the removal of EHS’ five channels from TOP’s broadcasting system.
EHS said it had to pay TOP NT$120 million (US$3.98 million) per year for listing its shopping channels on TOP’s platform, which it deemed too expensive, given that the purchasing power in southern Taiwan is considerably lower than that of northern Taiwan.
The TV shopping operator said TOP rejected its request for a fee adjustment and filed an application with the National Communications Commission to remove EHS’ channels from its broadcasting system.
EHS said that although it lost 330,000 viewers due to the clash with TOP, it expects the move to have a limited impact on its revenue this year, because it has joined Chunghwa Telecom Co’s (CHT, 中華電信) multimedia-on-demand (MOD) service from the beginning of this year, gaining 1.5 million more viewers from the listing.
Revenue generated from the five listed channels on CHT’s MOD is estimated to reach NT$700 million this year and grow to NT$1 billion next year, supported by CHT’s increasing MOD subscription, EHS said.
TOP had not commented on EHS’ channel removal as of press time last night.
In a press statement on Oct. 24, TOP said that it had never increased its listing fee over the past few years.
It said that EHS’ demand that listing fees be lowered due to differences in purchasing power discriminates against consumers in southern Taiwan.
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