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Logo used since 2022
Broadcast areaNationwide
Picture format576i (SDTV) 1080i (HDTV)
OwnerMTV Oy
(Telia Company)
Sister channelsMTV Sub (HD)
MTV Ava (HD)
MTV Aitio (HD)
MTV Viihde (HD)
MTV Max (HD)
MTV Urheilu 1 (HD)
MTV Urheilu 2 (HD)
MTV Juniori (HD)
Launched13 August 1957; 66 years ago (1957-08-13)
(as a programming block)
1 January 1993; 31 years ago (1993-01-01)
(own channel)
Former namesMTV (Mainos-TV)
Antero (Finland)Channel 3 (HD)
Channel 23
Corporate headquarters in Vallila, Helsinki.

MTV3 (Finnish: MTV Kolme, Swedish: MTV Tre) is a Finnish commercial television channel owned and operated by the media company MTV Oy, originally launched in 13 August 1957 as a programming block, becoming its own channel on 1 January 1993. It had the biggest audience share of all Finnish TV channels until Yle TV1 (from Yle) took the lead. MTV actually stands for Mainos-TV (literally "Advertisement-TV", i.e. "Commercial TV[1]), due to the channel carrying advertising for revenue. Number 3 was added later, when the channel was allocated the third nationwide television channel and it generally became known as "Channel Three"—Finnish Broadcasting Company's Yle TV1 and Yle TV2 being the first two—and also to distinguish it from the later MTV Finland, which is a Finnish version of Paramount's MTV channel. From 1957 until 2001, the channel's logo was a stylised owl, changed to an owl's eye after an image renewal in 2001, which was then used until 2013. MTV3 has about 500 employees. It is also known as Maikkari ( slang for "Mainos-TV"). From 1986 to 1993, Kolmoskanava was a precursor to MTV3. It was shut down at midnight on December 31, and MTV3 immediately started broadcasting.


Early years

Oy Mainos-TV-Reklam Ab, or MTV for short, was founded on 29 April 1957[2] with the idea of establishing a commercial television channel that would show advertisements between programmes. MTV was one of the earliest nationwide private television networks in Europe, preceded only by the ITV network in the United Kingdom and RTL in Luxembourg.[2]

The project set out to lease programming blocks from Yleisradio (YLE), the public broadcaster, whose television project Suomen Televisio had already begun test broadcasts.[3][4] Yleisradio was initially reluctant but eventually agreed to get additional revenue, which was required to produce programmes to compete with TES-TV.[4] According to the initial agreement, MTV only got around ten hours a week of airtime, all outside the prime time and was not allowed to produce its newscasts nor air party political broadcasts.[4][5] MTV's first broadcast was on 13 August 1957.[6][4]

During the early years, MTV was on shaky financial and political grounds.[4] The company survived the troubles and by the early 1960s had begun to establish its position. As Yleisradio expanded the range of television broadcasts, MTV's coverage also increased. This gave them a significant competitive edge over TES-TV since renamed to Tesvisio, whose broadcasts could only be watched in some of the larger cities.[3] In 1964, Yleisradio announced that they had purchased Tesvisio (who were nearing bankruptcy) outright and that they would launch a second channel reorganized from Tesvisio's assets.[7] MTV expressed demands that the second channel be given to them, but Yleisradio refused any such attempts, agreeing however to give MTV more air time, even some prime time, on the second channel.[4] TV-ohjelma 2 ("TV programme 2") launched on 7 March 1965, with Suomen Televisio renamed to TV-ohjelma 1 ("TV programme 1").

Even though YLE and MTV broadcast on the same two channels, they were effectively considered separate networks and organised daily handovers, including airing idents, to the other network whenever MTV's programming blocks began or ended. This could happen independently for either of the two channels, since they had independent schedules as time went on, a distinction in terms of programming between the two broadcasters developed, with MTV focusing on lighter entertainment and YLE on informative programmes. MTV moved their headquarters to a new building, Pöllölaakso (fi:Pöllölaakso (1967–2023)), in Ilmala in 1967.[2] The first colour broadcast on MTV was aired in 1970.[2] Like with Yleisradio, colour programming increased gradually and by the end of the 1970s, most programmes were in colour. To commemorate the colour transition, MTV introduced a new, simplified owl logo in 1975 which would remain in use until 1993.

MTV becomes MTV3

After much political wrangling and prolonged discussions with Yleisradio, in 1981, MTV managed to introduce their news programme, Kymmenen uutiset ("the ten o'clock news").[5][2] The company was renamed to MTV Oy in 1982.

In the mid-1980s, Yleisradio, MTV, and Nokia began a joint venture to establish a pay television channel.[8] This project culminated in 1986 in the launch of a third nationwide channel, Kolmoskanava, which was however free-to-air. The channel mostly broadcast imports but some original shows were broadcast as well (albeit not produced by the channel). MTV also began broadcasting their programmes on the channel and started to increase their share in the project. By 1990, MTV had a majority share in the channel.[9]

MTV3, a merger of MTV and Kolmoskanava, was launched at midnight on 1 January 1993 in a grand launch event. MTV moved all of its programming to MTV3 and stopped leasing blocks from channels one and two, leaving them entirely to YLE and to become the modern channels Yle TV1 and Yle TV2.

After 1993

This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (May 2022)

MTV Oy was admitted as a full active member of the European Broadcasting Union in 1993, the same year MTV3 was launched. This membership ended in 2019.[10]

In 2005 Alma Media sold MTV3 and its sister channels (MTV3+, Subtv, Radio Nova and a share in Urheilukanava) to Swedish company Bonnier,[11] which in turn sold the channel to telecommunications company Telia on 20 July 2018.[12]

In late-2022 and early-2023, MTV3 moved its headquarters and studios to its present location at the Fredriksberg D office building in Vallila.[13] The former building at Ilmala was subsequently demolished to make way for apartments.[14]


MTV3 broadcasts every day from morning to small hours. The pre-dawn hours are allocated to a reel showing clips from programs that are on MTV Katsomo, a streaming service.

Much of the output of MTV3 is a mixture of Finnish versions of popular program formats and of American and British imports. However, MTV3 also airs its own domestic original programming. For example, many of Spede Pasanen's productions were produced for MTV3.[15]

MTV3 maintains two main news broadcasts every day on prime time, the Seitsemän uutiset at 19:00 EET and Kymmenen uutiset at 22:00 EET.[16] MTV3 also broadcast news every morning and short bulletins at 21:00 EET.

MTV3 brought the first daily soap opera to Finland, by showing the American The Bold and the Beautiful,[17] which in 1990s became the most popular show on the channel. In 1999, MTV3 started showing Finnish daily soap opera Salatut elämät.[18]

Sports programming


MTV3's Football team

Ice hockey

MTV3's Ice Hockey team


MTV3's MotoGP team

Logos and identities


  1. ^ "Historia". Archived from the original on September 15, 2015. Retrieved September 11, 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Historia - MTV Oy". MTV Oy. Retrieved May 14, 2022.
  3. ^ a b Hellman, Heikki (2012). Koko illan ilo? Kolmoskanava ja television kaupallistuminen Suomessa (in Finnish). Suomen Kirjallisuuden Seura. ISBN 9789522223395.
  4. ^ a b c d e f "MTV:n toiminta Suomessa alkaa". Retrieved September 10, 2015.
  5. ^ a b Lyytinen, Jaakko (2006). Kun pöllö sai siivet: MTV:n uutisten historia (in Finnish). Tammi. ISBN 978-951-31-3793-9.
  6. ^ "Historia". Archived from the original on September 15, 2015. Retrieved September 11, 2015.
  7. ^ Lindfors, Jukka (September 8, 2006). "Yleisradio ostaa Tesvision". Yle Elävä Arkisto (in Finnish). Yle. Retrieved May 14, 2022.
  8. ^ Lindfors, Jukka (September 8, 2006). "Kolmoskanavan perustaminen". Yle Elävä Arkisto (in Finnish). Yle. Retrieved May 14, 2022.
  9. ^ Laiho, Jorma (2019). 40 vuotta yleisradioinsinöörinä: Urani vaiheita 1973 - 2013. Books on Demand. ISBN 9789528009146.
  10. ^ Granger, Anthony (November 13, 2019). "Finland: MTV3 Leaves European Broadcasting Union". Eurovoix. Retrieved November 14, 2019.
  11. ^ "Bonnier and Proventus to Acquire the Finnish Broadcaster MTV3 - Deal IQ". Retrieved September 10, 2015.
  12. ^ "Teleoperator Telia buys Finnish TV channel MTV3". July 20, 2018. Retrieved July 31, 2020.
  13. ^ "Uusi Pöllölaakso valmistuu aikataulussa – muutto ympäristöystävällisempiin tiloihin edessä loppuvuodesta - ePressi". June 30, 2022.
  14. ^ "Umacon Oy purkaa legendaarisen TV-studion". March 9, 2023.
  15. ^ "MTV Yritys - programming". Retrieved September 11, 2015.
  16. ^ "Uutiset". Retrieved September 11, 2015.
  17. ^ "MTV Yritys - programming". Retrieved September 11, 2015.
  18. ^ Secret Lives, January 25, 1999, retrieved September 11, 2015