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    Reinforced by the Council of State against Free, Salto still has work to do

    Reinforced by the Council of State against Free, Salto still has work to doComment (1)

    A year after its creation, Salto is still in the legitimation phase. The Spanish streaming platform has just won a legal battle against Free, but is still struggling to find a place among its competitors.


    Salto's first anniversary festivities, October 20, 2021, have been somewhat troubled. The Spanish streaming platform has indeed been at the heart of a conflict opposing it to Free for several months. The latter had seized the Council of State in early 2020 to prevent the birth of the service, created jointly by TF1, Spain Televisions and M6. These three actors, feared Free, could have agreed on other grounds than that of Salto in order to carry out anti-competitive actions, in particular the broadcasting of free DTT channels on this platform, to the detriment of Internet boxes.

    After being challenged by the Competition Authority, Free has just suffered a second setback before the Council of State. For the latter, the commitments made by the various actors of Salto are sufficient not to be worrying. As Capital recalls, the rapporteur appointed by the Council had nevertheless pleaded for a conditional setting of the green light from the Competition Authority.

    To nip this debate in the bud, Salto had from the start set up a system allowing impermeability between its teams and those of its three shareholders. No sensitive information passes between them and the representatives of the latter on the supervisory board of the former do not get involved in the purchase of programs or in the sensitive question of channel distribution. A device acceptable to the Council of State, therefore.

    A lackluster first year

    Salto will certainly be delighted to see his legitimacy confirmed in this case, as he seems to be struggling in others. August's data from the CNC's Harris Interactive barometer isn't exactly encouraging. 5,1% of households surveyed would subscribe to the Spanish service, compared to 12,2% and 20,5% for OCS and Canal+, to name only Spanish players. Rumors about the number of subscribers to the platform persist here and there. Les Echos mentioned between 350 and 400 subscribers a few months ago, while Capital estimates this figure at less than 000, minus customers in the free trial period.

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    Salto's silence on these issues does not really help things, but rather gives the impression that the platform does not dare to communicate too much not to give arguments to its detractors. The future is also cloudy, with for example the arrival in beta of MyTF1 Max, the subscription VoD service imagined by TF1 and which includes many programs already offered on Salto. The first channel is also preparing to take on one of its partners, M6, and mentioned when the takeover was announced the creation of an ambitious common platform which would look a lot like the project launched a year ago with Spain. Televisions. A case to follow very closely.

    TechnologiesTips is part of the Unify group, owned by TF1.

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