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CCR Short Takes

News | 02/14/2001 5:00 am EST

Shaw-Star Choice structural separation questioned by CAB
The Canadian Association of Broadcasters says Shaw Communications Inc isn’t adhering to rules that mandate a structural separation between itself and affiliate, Canadian Satellite Communications Inc. Cancom recently merged with another Shaw affiliate, Star Choice Communications Inc. In a Jan. 26 submission to the CRTC, the CAB says some of its member broadcasters received a letter from Cancom president Peter Classon, asking whether the affiliation fee per subscriber paid by Star Choice was equal to the rate given to Shaw for the same service. According to the CAB, the letter stated it was Cancom’s intention “to clear up all outstanding rate discrepancies by year end,” given the new ownership structure between Star Choice, Cancom and Shaw. The CAB also points out that Harold Roozen is a director of Shaw and chair of Cancom. The dual appointment is in conflict with the CRTC’s conditions of licence, which prevent members of Cancom’s board from being members of Shaw’s board or any of Shaw’s subsidiaries, affiliates or related companies. Moreover, Classon has been appointed Cancom president while continuing as senior VP of Shaw, contrary to conditions of licence. The CAB made the comments in connection with applications by Cancom and Star Choice to renew their respective broadcasting licences for national satellite distribution (PN 2000-176). The licence expires Feb. 28.


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