By Stuart Thomson
French service provider Free has signed a new distribution agreement with commercial broadcaster TF1, which will see the continued distribution of all TF1’s free-to-air and thematic pay TV channels., as well as non-linear services, on the FreeTV platform.
The agreement means that TF1’s on-demand services MYTF1 and TFOUMAX will be distributed by Free.
Free said that the agreement would enable its subscribers to view TF1’s range of services across all screens, with all of the advanced functionality available and an enlarged UHD offering covering sporting events such as the Euro2020 football tournament as well as entertainment programming and movies.
TF1 has had a fraught relationship with distribution partners in recent years, having fought to secure better commercial terms for the supply of channels and enhanced services such as its on-demand offerings.
Relationships have however improved over the last year or so. The broadcaster struck a deal with Orange at the end of 2020 that saw it offer targeted advertising to clients using Orange’s platform, as well as launch a premium ad-free on-demand offering.
TF1 announced in May that it was in talks to merge with France’s other main commercial broadcaster, M6 Group, owned by RTL Group.
The pair said that their proposed combination would accelerate the development of a “French streaming champion” through the combination of catch-up services MYTF1 and 6play, along with the creation of a standalone SVOD service.