Turkey's broadcasting body queries ATV-Sabah sale

Calik Group's acquisition of Turkey's second-largest media group ATV-Sabah may be in jeopardy due to a regulatory issue over its Qatari partner, a member of Turkey's television and radio regulatory board said on Thursday.

Turkey's broadcasting body queries ATV-Sabah sale

This week Calik said its subsidiary Turkuvaz Media Group had paid the $1.1 billion to gain control of ATV-Sabah from the state-owned Savings Deposit Insurance Fund .

Calik said the payment had been made with a $750 million loan from two Turkish banks and $350 million put up by Calik and Qatar-based Al Wasaeel International Media Co, which has bought a 25 percent stake in Turkuvaz.

"If the announcements from Turkuvaz and the TMSF are true they are contrary to article 29 in the broadcasting law, and this means the tender has ended unsuccessfully," Saban Sevinc, a member of the country's television and radio regulatory board , told Reuters. The article states RTUK must be informed within a month of any changes in the ownership structure of a firm owning shares in a media company.

"If the TMSF has carried out the tender in these conditions it means it has been very brave and taken a great risk," Sevinc said.

Calik was not immediately available to comment on the issue. Calik, which has close links to the ruling AK Party, bought ATV-Sabah at an auction in December, paying the minimum price as the sole bidder.

The general manager of Calik Holding is Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's 29-year-old son-in-law Berat Albayrak.

Reuters

Last Mod: 25 Nisan 2008, 16:56
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