BBC Worldwide Channels celebrates a successful 2012 in South Africa

Louise Duffy | 06-12-2012

2012 marked another successful year for BBC Worldwide’s channels in South Africa – BBC Entertainment, BBC Lifestyle, BBC Knowledge and CBeebies. With its mix of British programming coupled with unique global TV events and local commissions, its share of commercial viewing in the region has increased by 5.7% (year on year), resulting in its portfolio having the highest commercial share out of all international broadcasters (4.5% ) on DStvi among adults.

Jon Farrar, VP Programming EMEA, BBC Worldwide Channels said: “2012 has been a great year for the BBC channels portfolio in South Africa, in an ever competitive market. We’re really proud that a growing audience has enjoyed the diversity, quality and depth of programming that our BBC channels have to offer.

"Our viewers will have even more to look forward to in 2013 as we continue our commitment to bringing the very best of British television and on-screen talent, original and exclusive commissions and global TV viewing events to our South African audiences.”

BBC Lifestyle consistently ranked as the number one lifestyle channel on DStv, with The Great British Bake Off serving up an increase in the time slot average by 62% compared with the previous three months and averaging up to 80,000 viewers for the semi-final. Big Fat Gypsy Weddings also proved to be a big draw, reaching 1.4 million viewers over the course of the series.

BBC Entertainment ranked as the number two international channel among Premium individuals on DStv. Top Gear continued to bring in the viewers, with the Top Gear India Special the top performing programme on the channel for 2012, reaching 340,000 viewers.

BBC Entertainment also had success in 2012 with the return of Come Dine With Me South Africa. This locally commissioned version of the show reached 120,000 viewers on average per episode.

BBC Entertainment continued to be the destination of choice for South African viewers on a Sunday Night during 2012, with popular favourites such as Downton Abbey and Strictly Come Dancing. Downton Abbey series 2, which premiered on Sunday nights, boosted the channel’s timeslot share by 270% during its broadcast, consistently making BBC Entertainment the number one international general entertainment channel.

CBeebies was the second highest growing children’s channel among children aged 4 to 15, comparing the first half of 2012 to the latter half of the year to date. Favourite shows included Mister Maker and Andy’s Wild Adventures.

For 2013, South African viewers can expect the return of global favourites like Top Gear series 19, series 3 of Downton Abbey and Call The Midwife on BBC Entertainment.

BBC Lifestyle will be showing Ramsay’s Ultimate Cookery, the return of The Great British Bake Off for a second series, as well as original commissions including Food and Drink.

BBC Knowledge will have new original commissions such as Stargazing and Dara O’Briain’s Science Club along with the wildlife documentary Africa narrated by Sir David Attenborough.

Finally, CBeebies will have a new series of Andy’s Wild Adventures, plus Rastamouse and Mr Bloom’s Nursery.