Romance blossoms for international expansion

Jörn Krieger | 28-09-2012

German pay-TV operator Mainstream Media and ZDF Enterprises, the commercial subsidiary of German public broadcaster ZDF, have announced an intention to launch customised versions of subscription channel Romance TV in new international markets.

Substantive negotiations are currently being conducted with platform operators in Eastern Europe, ZDF Enterprises announced in Mainz. The channel's operators will also be present at international trade fairs such as CASBAA in Hong-Kong and DISCOP in Johannesburg.

The reason for the expansion plans is the success of Romance TV in Poland. One year after its launch, the channel counts more than one million subscribers on HD satellite platform "n", according to the companies. In addition to the DTH distribution, the channel which is tailor-made for the local audience can also be received on more than 50 cable platforms.

Romance TV which targets women with series, made-for-TV movies and telenovelas ranks among the top 3 of all female-targeted channels in Poland, according to a viewer analysis conducted by Polish cable operator Toya.

"We are delighted with the great success Romance TV achieves with programmes from ZDF and ZDF Enterprises specifically assembled for this platform," said Alexander Coridaß, president and CEO of ZDF Enterprises. "This interesting combination of international sales and distribution of pay-TV formats opens up a completely new and highly attractive growth market for us outside Germany."

Romance TV Polska is operated by Mainstream Networks Holding which focuses on the international distribution of pay-TV channels outside Germany. Besides main shareholder Mainstream Media AG, ZDF Enterprises holds 26% in the joint venture.

In Germany, Mainstream Media operates pay-TV channels GoldStar TV, Heimatkanal and Romance TV. The Munich-based company plans to launch a free-to-air children's channel dubbed Yep! in spring 2013.