European Commission OKs Premiere stake

News Corp. will take 25% stake in pay TV operator

BRUSSELS -- The European Commission on Wednesday cleared News Corp.'s purchase of a 25% stake in German pay TV operator Premiere, but only after the U.S. media titan agreed to give third parties access to Premiere's satellite platform.

Premiere's 4.3 million clients can watch pay TV programs broadcast by its competitors, but the company had announced that would end when it switched to technology used by News Corp.

The commission -- the EU's antitrust authority -- said the move would stifle competition and forced the company to reverse its plans.