Sun News Network shuts down after buyer fails to materialize
The Sun News Network went off the air Friday morning after negotiations to sell the troubled television channel were unsuccessful.
No on-air announcement was made as the screen went dark and was replaced moments later with the Sun TV logo.
The closure of the conservative-angled news channel follows months of uncertainty surrounding its fate, after Postmedia Network Canada Corp. announced plans to purchase the Sun Media newspapers and websites from Quebecor for $316 million.
The Sun News channel was not included in the deal, which sparked outsiders to suggest the network could fold after years of struggling in the ratings.
In a news release to coincide with the early-morning shutdown, Sun Media Corp. said it spent months actively seeking a potential buyer.
But it said “no party capable of taking over the channel was found” and that in view of the financial losses “there was no alternative to closing Sun News.”
“This is an unfortunate outcome; shutting down Sun News was certainly not our goal,” said Julie Tremblay, president and CEO of Media Group and Sun Media Corporation.
“Over the past four years, we tried everything we could to achieve sufficient market penetration to generate the profits needed to operate a national news channel. Sadly, the numerous obstacles to carriage that we encountered spelled the end of this venture.”
Adding further questions about the future of the network was a short-term agreement with Postmedia which allowed Sun News to licence the rights for its existing logo for only a year before Postmedia required the broadcaster to distance itself from the brand.
“The closure is regrettable for the Canadian broadcasting system, which is losing a distinctively Canadian voice in the national news space,” said Tremblay.
“We thank all employees for their daily efforts and the talent they have contributed to the channel. We wish them all the best in their future endeavours.”...Read more...