It was running a £100million a year loss in the UK after fewer subscribers signed up than expected, but will continue to operate internationally.
The channel shut down operations by posting a statement on its website that reads, 'Setanta Sports customers from England, Wales, Scotland, Isle of Man and Channel Islands, please be advised that it is with great regret that Setanta GB is no longer trading'.
The closure means 200 of the 420-strong UK and Ireland workforce will be made redundant.
'This is a sad day for all concerned', commented Setanta chairman Sir Robin Miller. 'Unfortunately, in a difficult and highly competitive market, and despite strenuous efforts by the board and management, it has not been possible to find sufficient additional funds in the time available to ensure its survival'.
Private equity owner Doughty Hanson has been forced to write off its investment of £85 million. The loss is a blow for Doughty Hanson, which has made 118 acquisitions totalling £24 billion since its inception 24 years ago. A spokesman said the exposure was relatively small in light of larger and more successful investments made elsewhere. Other investors, including founders Leonard Ryan and Michael O'Rourke and investment group Balderton, will also incur a share of losses totalling £450 million.