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Confident Of Survival Says Internet Chief!

By: Bill Osborne
Date: 14/03/2003

RON Henwood, the new boss of the Football League's internet partner today confirmed there are no parent guarantees to bail out clubs if Premium TV folds but was confident it would survive.

The Guardian said: Reports yesterday claimed Premium could close - so the news NTL are under no obligation to support the firm if it collapses will leave clubs fearing a repeat of the crippling ITV Digital court case which left clubs battling a £131.9m shortfall when Carlton and Granada escaped responsibility for their failed business.

The company have cut staff by 50% and have replaced their chief executive officer.

Henwood said; "ITVD collapsed and its two shareholders put it into liquidation. Premium hasn't collapsed and is not in liquidation. With ITVD, parent guarantees only became the focus when it collapsed and the clubs pursued its shareholders."

"There are critical differences between Premium and ITVD and we're in a very different situation, both in terms of the amount of money and period of time involved. The ITVD money was over a couple of years. Our contract is for another £35million in a revenue share, over another 15 years."

"This contract is not of the scale and importance to the League that the ITVD deal was to them and we know the internet is growing, broadband is growing and other potential media is growing."

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