Sky defends latest price increase

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Related tags: Sky sports

Sky has defended its latest price increase for its pay-per-view football channel Premiership Plus.Licensees have spoken out against the price hike,...

Sky has defended its latest price increase for its pay-per-view football channel Premiership Plus.

Licensees have spoken out against the price hike, which comes shortly after another increase in annual subscription charges for Premiership football.

Dawn Harrison, of the Unicorn in Leek in Staffordshire, told The Publican that her Premiership Plus fee had been doubled from £200 to £400. "We will be voting with our feet and not subscribing this year. My opinion is that we could gain more from using the £400 to advertise the pub," she said.

Christine Desborough, licensee of the Friendship Inn at Ashton-Under-Lyne, says she cannot cope with the rise. "I only take £2,000 a week. There is no way I will be able to cover costs. There is a pub up the road that attracts a lot of punters because of football, so if we don't get Sky we will lose all our trade. It's beyond a joke."

A spokeswoman from the satellite giant said: "This year Sky will be offering the Premiership Plus Season Ticket at a special cost of £350 up to 15th August 2003 and £400 thereafter.

"At the equivalent of £8.75 a match for 40 extra live matches, this year's season ticket offers excellent value for money to those licensees who choose to take advantage of it.

"In the first year the Premiership Plus season ticket was offered at a promotional price to enable licensees to trial what was a new product.

"Over the last two years we have aligned the pricing more closely to the cost of the broadcast rights and the commercial value of the programming."

Meanwhile a Sky Business employee has spoken out against the satellite operator, saying it treats both customers and staff poorly.

The call centre employee, who wished to remain anonymous, said: "How is it possible for Sky to double its prices for the business sector but not for domestic customers? If you have a pub and your price goes up by as much as 22 per cent, how are you going to cope?"

There is little indication that the huge price rises are being invested back into the workplace, according to the source. "Sky Business raised prices by 22 per cent and doubled prices for the season ticket and yet all I got was a 1.5 per cent pay rise. Then it advertises for new staff by stating 'Sky makes a profit of £120 million per annum'.

"Sky Business is one big monopoly which can do anything it wants, whether it is to customers or staff."

Sky Business declined to comment.

Related topics: Sport

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