Sky completes Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland deals, drops BSkyB brand
| 13 November 2014
Pay-TV giant Sky has formally announced completing the acquisition of Sky Italia and taking a majority interest in Sky Deutschland.
new sky copyYet in addition to creating what it claims will be Europe's leading entertainment company, Sky is also putting to rest the BSkyB identity which it has operated in under since 1990 when the former Sky Television merged with erstwhile rival British Satellite Broadcasting.
The new European Sky operation, first announced in July 2014, will serve 20 million customers, bringing together the leading pay-TV businesses in three of Europe's four biggest markets. Between them the three companies have 47.5 million subscription products. Sky says that the new business will have expanded growth opportunity, benefits of scale, and significant synergy potential and will immediately be the leading pay-TV provider in three of the four largest markets in Europe.
Group chief executive Jeremy Darroch will oversee the enlarged group as well as continuing to lead the UK and Ireland business, while Andrew Griffith will be group chief financial officer. Andrea Zappia will continue to lead the business in Italy as chief executive of Sky Italia and Brian Sullivan remains chief executive of Sky Deutschland AG.
Commenting on the announcement, Darroch said: "The three Sky businesses will be even better together. We have the opportunity to create a business that can lead and shape our industry in the future. Customers will benefit as we launch exciting new services, bring them even [greater] TV and accelerate innovation across all of the markets in which we operate. By joining together, we will share our strengths and expertise while retaining a strong identity in each country where we operate. The opportunity ahead is substantial and we believe the new Sky will be good for customers, content creators and shareholders alike."