Viacom sends Spike to the UK
Michelle Clancy
| 09 October 2014
Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN) is readying the international roll-out of another of its major US cable networks with the launch of Spike in the UK in the spring of 2015.

The TV channel, which reaches almost 100 million households in the US, will launch on the Freeview digital terrestrial TV (DTT) platform early next year, making it available free-to-air in an additional 11 million UK TV homes.

VIMN will also add to Viacom-owned Channel 5's flanker channels on Freeview, adding additional Viacom content to the schedules of 5USA and 5.

Spike's UK schedules will combine repeats of Channel 5 factual programmes, such as Police Interceptors and Cowboy Builders, with Spike's US content, including Bar Rescue. The male-skewing channel will also feature acquired films and series and library content from other Viacom brands with proven appeal to adult viewers.

"Spike is one of our best performing networks and brands and I'm delighted audiences outside the US are going to be able to access and enjoy it for the first time," said Philippe Dauman, Viacom president and CEO.

He added: "This launch has been made possible by our recent acquisition of Channel 5, which gives us ownership of a pipeline of quality factual content. Combined with Spike's US content and targeted acquisitions it represents a powerful programme line-up that we are very confident will prove popular with British TV viewers."

Spike will be managed out of Channel 5.

VIMN is also aiming to secure distribution for Spike on Virgin Media and on the UK's DSAT platforms.