Channel 10 bid suspended
Second Authority for Radio and Television said to put search for new franchisee on hold following agreement enabling financially struggling commercial channel to stay on the air
The Second Authority for Radio and Television has decided to suspend the search for a new franchisee for Channel 10, Yedioth Ahronoth reported this week.


Channel 10, Israel's second commercial television channel after Channel 2, has been facing growing financial difficulties, prompting primary shareholder Yossi Meiman to announce his media group will no longer finance the fledgling station.


The station was supposed to go off the air at the end of August, but was given a last-minute reprieve, after Meiman, the Second Authority and the Treasury struck a deal meant to enable its survival.


The agreement states that the channel will begin paying off its NIS 35 million ($9.22 million) debt in 2012, or at such time as it goes from being a franchised station to a licensed broadcasting one.


An additional NIS 10 million ($2.63 million) debt will be paid immediately, in cash.


The Second Authority's decision still pends the Treasury and Communications Ministry's approval.


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