NEWSPAPER rivals from The Herald & Times Group, Johnston Press and DC Thomson are said to be combining their respective might in an unprecedented home-grown bid to win the new Channel 3 TV licence for Scotland.
The trio – publishers of The Herald, The Scotsman and The Press & Journal are believed to hope their 1000 strong collective of staff, reach of local and national newspapers and websites, and a fourth partner in Question Time programme makers Tinopolis, will help them to success.
Such a move would raise the stakes in the bidding process which already has another group made up of STV/Bauer/ITN in the running for a Scotland wide channel, with Trinity Mirror/Macmillan Media also in the hunt for regional rights.
Further details will be made public on Monday, but the new bid states that the alliance will offer "unrivalled newsgathering capability in Scotland".
Tinopolis – which has staff in Scotland, England and Wales – are also involved in separate bids for similar licences in Wales.
The licences are up for grabs following recommendations in the Digital Britain Report which proposed a publicly funded news pilot for what will be known as the independently financed news consortia.
They are expected to be awarded in March and run until around 2012.