Mr Murdoch, who also owns The Sun and The Times, had discussions about investing in GB News but then decided to launch his own upstart channel.
However, his own television network has so far failed in attempts to unseat GB News, the BBC or Sky, despite hiring combative presenter Piers Morgan after leaving ITV’s Good Morning Britain.
Jeremy Kyle, the former ITV presenter, is set to replace Piers Morgan on his eponymous show when he takes a break over the summer to film a series of true crime documentaries as part of his major contract with News Corp.
Mr. Murdoch’s deal with Morgan also includes a column in the Sun and the New York Post, a book deal with HarperCollins and contributions to Fox News.
TalkTV’s The News Desk with Tom Newton Dunn and Piers Morgan Uncensored drew an average audience of 2,500 and 33,900 in Thursday’s 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. timeslots, according to TV ratings compiler BARB.
GB News’ 7pm show hosted by former UKIP leader Nigel Farage attracted 64,000 viewers, while his 8pm show attracted 46,000 viewers. BBC News attracted an audience of 72,000 and 58,000 on the 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. slots.
A Virgin Media spokesperson said: “Like other providers of Electronic Program Guides, Virgin Media reviews its listings from time to time as required by our Electronic Program Guide Policy. We do not comment on any ongoing discussions.
TalkTV and GB News declined to comment.