Discovery acquires a 20% stake in Televista
By Robert Briel
March 6, 2012 17.17 Europe/London

Discovery Networks International (DNI) and Televista have announced the acquisition by DNI of a 20% equity stake in Televista, a French pay-TV company specialising in the female lifestyle market.

Under this agreement, DNI becomes a strategic partner to Televista and will contribute to the development of its female lifestyle channels business.

This equity investment supplements the content supply agreement already announced by the two companies in January 2012.

Through these transactions, Discovery becomes a key strategic partner of VIA, a female lifestyle DTT channel project filed by Televista on January 10, 2012 with the CSA.

Via is a 100% female lifestyle channel, supported by a television company and French investment funds from Aplus Finance, Altice and Audacia.

Local French programming made by Via will have the opportunity to be invested in Discovery’s network of female lifestyle channels outside France, reaching international audiences in multiple countries.

Building its female lifestyle portfolio, TLC and Real Time across 170 markets, DNI has reached 135 million subscribers in just 20 months. In September 2010, Discovery launched Real Time in Italy as a free to air channel in Italy. In less than 18 months it has become the number eight commercial channel amongst women 20-49.

Gaspard de Chavagnac, Televista CEO stated: ”I am very pleased to welcome Discovery Networks International, the largest non fiction media company in the world to Televista. Discovery will bring both expertise and content we need to accelerate our development especially in Free DTT channels where Discovery is already present in Italy, Spain and Germany”.

Dee Forbes, president and managing director, Discovery Networks Western Europe, said: “France is a very important market for us and we are delighted to be able to make this investment in Televista. We have a strong understanding of the female lifestyle market and are looking forward to partnering with Gaspard and his team. We have also launched a series of free to air channels across Western Europe over the last three years to complement our core paytv business. We are excited by Televista’s future French plans and the opportunity to bring our popular female lifestyle programming to viewers.”