July 2, 2015 / 9:10 PM / 4 years ago

UPDATE 1-Mexico to award new digital TV channels in 2016 -regulator

(Adds details on the tender and background)

MEXICO CITY, July 2 (Reuters) - Mexico’s telecoms regulator said on Thursday that a new tender process for digital TV channels will begin in the last quarter of 2015, and the winner will be announced in the first half of 2016.

The step comes after the regulator in April revoked the awarding of a new TV network to media group Grupo Radio Centro , which failed to pay the sum required to secure it.

The new tender includes more than 123 TV channels, which could be offered individually or in the form of networks.

The auctioning of new channels is one of the central planks of the government’s drive to open up a sector that has long been dominated by broadcaster Televisa.

In March, Mexico awarded a free-to-air television network to media group Cadena Tres, part of Grupo Empresarial Angeles, run by the Mexican businessman Olegario Vazquez, for about 1.8 billion pesos (about $116 million). (Reporting by Tomas Sarmiento and Adriana Barrera; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)

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