Switzer channels approved

The CRTC has given the green light to four new channels to be launched by an as-yet unnamed corporation headed by industry mogul Jay Switzer.

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has given its blessing to former CHUM CEO Jay Switzer’s application for four new Category 2 channels.

The CRTC approved all four HD channels on July 2, opening the door for Switzer – on behalf of an as-yet unnamed corporation – to proceed with the launch of the properties. Although Switzer declined to comment for this story before the final requirements for the licence are submitted this week, he was quoted in a March 2010 MiC story as saying he hoped to see the channels on air by the fall.

The first two channels, Velocity and Adventure, are both action-oriented and male-targeted, with Velocity focusing more prominently on programming with a ‘fast-paced fictional plot featuring car chases, explosions, special effects or martial arts.’ Both channels will feature programming that includes classic and contemporary film, series, miniseries, TV movies and magazine-style shows.

The other two, Kiss and The Love Channel, are geared more toward the ladies, featuring romantically themed programming including films, TV movies, series, miniseries and magazine-style shows.

The application approval addressed the complaint filed by CTVglobemedia stating that the Adventure channel would compete too directly with its Space channel. Switzer responded to the complaint by stating that science fiction and fantasy programming was only a ‘subset’ of action and adventure programming and that his company had ‘no intention of devoting close to 25% of its weekly schedule’ to those genres.

The CRTC will grant the licences once the final requirements have been met, including documentation that ‘an eligible Canadian corporation has been incorporated in accordance with the application in all material respects,’ an agreement with at least one licenced distributor has been arranged and that the applicant presents a written statement that it is prepared to start operations ‘at the earliest possible date.’