Sun TV sets April launch date for new network
Sun TV's brand of right-wing television news is set to launch April 18, the Quebecor parent company has confirmed.
Company spokesman Serge Sasseville told The Canadian Press that the Sun News Network will hit the airwaves in six weeks.
The conservative all-news channel is hoping to replicate the success of the Fox News network in the United States.
The 24-hour news channel was set to launch in January but faced several startup challenges -- including the recent resignations of members of its Ottawa bureau.
Sources say the network also ran into renovation snags and the realization that it required more money than initially budgeted for a television operation.
The project was announced in a blaze of publicity last summer by former Stephen Harper spokesman Kory Teneycke. He briefly left the endeavour in September but returned earlier this year.
Aims for populist appeal
Sources say the network already has a television ad set to air that will play up its populist appeal.
The commercial ready to go emphasizes that the network will be standing up for taxpayers and defending ordinary Canadians.
The CRTC approved a five-year licence for the channel Nov. 26 after Quebecor Inc. dropped its request for a special licence that would have required cable and satellite carriers to offer the service.
The regulator received thousands of interventions from citizens across the country. Many were filed through a New York-based advocacy group that started an online petition demanding the CRTC not give any special favours to the channel they dub "Fox News North."
It will feature hard news and "straight talk" featuring well-known firebrand personalities, such as conservative commentator Ezra Levant, Corus radio talk host Charles Adler and others.
Its international content will be purchased under contract with CNN, not Fox.