02/18/09
“Berlusconi vs. Murdoch: Italy’s Real Reality TV”
In a February 18, 2009 article in Time Magazine, Booz & Company Principal Pietro Candela (Europe) called a highly-publicized rivalry between media barons Rupert Murdoch and Silvio Berlusconi the inevitable result of the “convergence” of free and pay television, which may result in the end of the 20-year-old duopoly between Mediaset and RAI. That is in part, Candela said, because Murdoch is doing well financially in Italy with his company, Sky Italia, registering earnings of $3.2 billion last year—and closing in on RAI ($3.7 billion) and Mediaset ($4 billion). Fueling the competition between the media barons, Candela added, is that with “the TV system reach(ing) maturity, we’re now seeing open combat for ratings, profit and talent.”