Louise Duffy | 14-08-2013
European entertainment network RTL Group and CBS Studios International have announced plans for a partnership to launch two thematic channels in Southeast Asia.
The two channels will be broadcast in English and local languages and distributed in up to 29 Asian markets including Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. The channels will be distributed by cable, satellite and Internet television (IPTV) networks in the region. Both of the channels will be available in high definition (HD).
The Singapore-based venture will be named RTL CBS Asia Entertainment Network with a management team that will report to a board of directors represented by executives from RTL Group and CBS Studios International.
The first channel, RTL CBS Entertainment, is scheduled to roll out in September 2013 with general entertainment hits such as RTL Group's The X Factor, America's Got Talent and Celebrity Apprentice as well as CBS's Elementary, Under the Dome, Late Show with David Letterman and Entertainment Tonight.
This will be followed in spring 2014 with RTL CBS Extreme, a channel dedicated to action adventure, reality series and extreme sports. Programming will include series such as Fear Factor, Red Bull, NCIS: Los Angeles and Hawaii Five-0.
On an ongoing basis, the venture will have access to first-run shows and library titles from RTL Group's content arm, FremantleMedia, and from CBS, which owns America's No 1 network, and a catalogue of more than 70,000 hours of programming.
Guillaume de Posch, co-CEO of RTL Group, said: "We are delighted to team up with CBS Studios International. By joining forces with such a renowned global partner, we are continuing our tried-and-tested build strategy, expanding our business to more countries in Asia with high growth potential. CBS is a highly creative and professional organisation with world leading content which complements FremantleMedia's catalogue very well. I am very confident that this venture will benefit strongly from the combined broadcasting and production expertise of both parties."
Armando Nuñez, president and CEO of the CBS Global Distribution Group, added: "This is another opportunity to use CBS's internationally successful content to be part of a new channel venture in one of the world's fastest growing TV regions. It's even better to do it with a best-in-class partner such as RTL Group, one of the most accomplished and respected broadcasters anywhere. We're excited to create an additive way to monetize our content in Asia and provide audiences throughout the region the best television from two of the world's most successful programming companies."