‘The Great British Bake Off’ could reportedly move to Netflix.
Channel 4’s deal to show the popular baking programme ends after this year's series but bosses are said to have yet to start negotiations to keep it on the broadcaster.
A TV source told The Sun: “Bosses have a dilemma – break the bank to keep ‘Bake Off’, or lose it to a rival.
“It’s no secret that Channel 4 is facing cash problems so do they really have the money to secure another deal?
“They’ve been making cutbacks and this could well be to fund a new deal. But if they can’t match the pay demands, there’s not much they can do, and that opens the door for rivals like ITV and Netflix to swoop in.
“The fact is, this year is crunch time for the future of the ‘Bake Off’.”
The Sun also reported Channel 4 is planning to cut up to 200 jobs and has axed a string of shows following a huge downturn in TV advertising.
Its cash issues has sparked speculation ‘Bake Off’ is prime for a takeover by rival channels and streaming sites.
The show, which features judges Paul Hollywood, Prue Leith, Noel Fielding and Alison Hammond – and which has featured Matt Lucas – on top salaries, started the BBC in 2010, but was poached by Channel 4 in 2016 for £25 million after its ratings took off.
Netflix currently has the rights to air the show in America, while ITV was close to bidding for the UK rights during the last round of negotiations but decided against it.
Channel 4 told The Sun: “Any speculation around contracts is just that and we look forward to bringing many more soggy bottoms to our viewers in future.” Netflix and ITV declined to comment to the publication.