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Optus and FOXTEL sign new subscription television agreements
21 Dec 2010

Agreements allow Optus to provide FOXTEL services, including HD, to more Australians for the first time

Optus and FOXTEL today announced that they have signed new agreements that will allow Optus customers to receive FOXTEL's HD services; and for the first time will enable Optus to offer FOXTEL outside its cable area under a non-exclusive satellite agency agreement.

The new agreements will replace the Content Supply Agreement which Optus and FOXTEL signed in 2002, and which was amended in 2005, under which FOXTEL supplied channels to Optus.

The first new agreement covers Optus cable areas. Under this agreement Optus will offer its customers for the first time FOXTEL's iQ HD boxes and its high definition channels. FOXTEL iQ HD gives customers choice and control over their television viewing by allowing them to simply and intuitively record their favourite shows from over 15,000 hours of programming a week and to watch them at a time that suits them. FOXTEL's HD offering of 20 quality channels is Australia's most comprehensive HD line-up.

FOXTEL and Optus have also signed a non-exclusive agreement to enable Optus to sell FOXTEL in areas where Optus does not have cable network. Under this agreement Optus will act as a sales agent for FOXTEL. This new arrangement opens the way for Optus to explore bundling FOXTEL channels (which are supplied via satellite) with Optus' telecommunications services, providing more choice for customers looking to bundle FOXTEL with their broadband and home phone services.

In addition FOXTEL and Optus have agreed to amend some aspects of their existing agreement that covers broadcasting services FOXTEL provides to Optus.

FOXTEL CEO and Managing Director Kim Williams said, "The audio visual entertainment market is increasingly competitive with the arrival of terrestrial multichannels and new IPTV providers, and we welcome these agreements as they provide solid incentives for Optus to offer the full suite of FOXTEL subscription services into the future.

"These agreements will also allow existing Optus customers to enjoy for the first time the full benefits of FOXTEL's digital television offering, including FOXTEL's iQ HD boxes - giving customers choice and control over their television viewing," Mr Williams added.

Optus Chief Executive, Mr Paul O'Sullivan said, "FOXTEL has been a strategic partner and customer of Optus for many years and we're pleased to be able to extend the breadth of FOXTEL services we sell to our customers. We're also excited about providing Optus customers with the opportunity to buy FOXTEL services outside of our cable footprint for the first time."

Optus will begin selling these new FOXTEL services from February 2011. To register your interest with Optus please call 1800 044 289 or visit www.optus.com.au/dtv.

For further information call: Jamie Campbell at FOXTEL on 0418 269 088 or Elizabeth Greene at Optus on 0433 135 681.

About Optus
Optus is an Australian leader in integrated telecommunications, delivering cutting-edge communications, information technology and entertainment services. In 2001 SingTel became the parent company of Optus, paving the way to become a strong and strategic telecommunications player within the Asia-Pacific region.

About FOXTEL
FOXTEL is Australia's leading subscription television provider and is connected to over 1.63 million homes on cable and satellite through retail and wholesale distribution. FOXTEL strives to ensure subscribers find TV they want to watch every time they switch on through delivery of more than 200 channels covering news, sport, general entertainment, movies, documentaries, music and children’s programming. FOXTEL is owned by Telstra Corporation Ltd (50%), The News Corporation Ltd (25%), and Consolidated Media Holdings Ltd (25%).