Pierre Karl Péladeau, President and CEO of Quebecor Inc., Quebecor Media Inc. and Sun Media Corporation, announced today he is investing in a new hard news/straight talk English specialty channel called Sun TV News, through a partnership among Quebecor Media, and its two subsidiaries TVA Group and Sun Media Corporation.
On June 1st, 2010, TVA Group, on behalf of a partnership to be constituted between TVA Group and Sun Media Corporation, submitted an application to the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission for a three year Category 1 Specialty TV license for Sun TV News to replace the over the air Sun TV station in Toronto. The applications is presently under review.
"Far too many Canadians are tuning out completely or changing their dials to American all-news channels. They're opting out or switching over. That's not good for Canadian television. It's not good for Canadian democracy. And it's not good for Canada itself," Péladeau said. "Quebecor sees an untapped market opportunity in English Canadian TV news. We see an opportunity in offering Canadians something new, something better, something distinct. It is time to shake up the current players of the Canadian broadcasting system."
His news channel proposes to go beyond the obvious day-by-day headlines, he said, and to cover the full range of stories that impact Canadians.
"CBC News Network and CTV News Channel have had respectively 21 and 13 years to get it right and they've failed to win over viewers. Canadian TV news today is narrow, complacent, and politically correct," added Kory Teneycke, Vice President, Development of Quebecor Media, and former communications advisor to the Prime Minister's office. "Sun TV News will be different from the all-news channel format we know all too well in Canada. It will offer Canadians an attractive mixture of "hard news" reporting during the day and "straight talk" opinion journalism at night. This will not be another network catering to elite opinion and ignoring stories important to many Canadians."
The news network application announcement comes just days after QMI and Sun Media also announced appointments within their news bureau.
David Akin has been named as Sun Media National Bureau Chief in Ottawa, and Brian Lilley as a Senior Correspondent.
David Akin has had a 25-year career in both print and television. At CTV National News with Lloyd Robertson, Akin received a Gemini Award for his reporting. While working for The Globe and Mail, Akin received a National Newspaper Award citation of merit. He was also a member of the inaugural staff of National Post. Most recently, Akin was the National Affairs Correspondent for Canwest News Service.
In addition to his work in traditional media platforms, Akin has also been a pioneer in digital platforms. A blogger for almost a decade, Akin's On The Hill is one of the Top 15 most-read political blogs in the country and, last year, Akin was named one of the "100 Most Influential People in Ottawa" by the Hill Times.
Brian Lilley is a veteran broadcaster having spent the last decade in major market radio across Canada. In addition to work in Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto, he has spent the last five years as Ottawa Bureau Chief for Canada's largest private radio broadcaster.
While working with heritage news/talk radio stations like Newstalk 1010 in Toronto and CJAD in Montreal, Lilley has brought Canadian politics to the ears of millions of listeners across Canada. His time in Ottawa has also been marked by original news stories, off-beat analysis and one on one interviews with all major party leaders including the Prime Minister, the media company described.