Sky news channels return to Virgin Media

Sky News will return to the Virgin Media cable platform next week for the first time in more than 18 months under a new deal announced today by the two rival broadcasters.

BSkyB and Virgin Media confirmed this afternoon that they had signed a new carriage agreement effective from 13 November that will run until June 2011.

Under the deal, Sky News and Sky Sports News are among the eight ‘basic’Sky-branded channels that will be made available to Virgin Media subscribers once again.

The channels were removed from Virgin Media in March last year after the two companies became engaged in a spat over carriage fees.

In a joint statement to the City, Virgin Media and BSkyB said they had both agreed to drop high court proceedings against each other.

BSkyB chief executive Jeremy Darroch said: ‘This is great news for Sky and Virgin Media customers alike. We want our channels to be enjoyed by as many people as possible.”

Virgin Media chief executive Neil Berkett added: ‘I believe this agreement represents a fair deal and is the right thing for our customers. We recognise the quality and popularity of Sky’s channels and look forward to welcoming them back.”

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