Carlton Comms unveils internet deals

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Media group Carlton Communications has unveiled a joint venture with supermarket group Sainsbury and a £150 million partnership with four other leading European media companies, which it says will establish it as a leading player in new media.

The Sainsbury venture will link Carlton’s food TV channel, Carlton Food Network, its website simplyfood.co.uk and the store’s internet grocery sales and the media operations.

Carlton has formed an alliance with four other European media groups - Germany’s Kirch, Italy’s Mediaset, TF1 in France and Telecinco in Spain which will invest in internet business looking to expand across Europe. Carlton’s internet investment will reach around £75 million over the next four years.

Other internet deals include a tie-up with First Call, an internet ticket booking service, and WWW.com, which broadcasts radio stations over the internet. 

Michael Green, chairman of Carlton Communications, said: “This is a powerful combination of mass media promotion, content, distribution and e-fulfilment. Our free and pay television platforms broadcast to over 22 million people. By guiding viewers to our online content we can generate substantial e-commerce revenues.”

The five partners broadcast to 300 million people or over 80 per cent of the EU’s population. Rupert Miles, director of Carlton Online, said: “Entertainment and food have huge potential. We are using our strengths as a media company and our strategic alliances to build profitable internet businesses”.

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