Fremantle, SMG, CMC combine for Chinese TV formats

DetailsRebecca Hawkes | 14 April 2015

FremantleMedia and Shanghai Media Group (SMG) are to jointly develop entertainment formats for China to be distributed regionally by SMG's satellite channel Dragon TV and over-the-top (OTT) platform BesTV, and further afield through Fremantle's global network.

FM BlueBlackRGBposThe joint venture, which also includes entertainment investment company China Media Capital (CMC), will be based in Shanghai and will include both local producers and international experts, drawing on Fremantle's expertise in producing hit TV shows to provide original Chinese content.

"The Chinese television market is rapidly becoming one of the most important in the world. This new relationship with BesTV, SMG and CMC allows FremantleMedia to build on its existing presence in China and strengthen our ties in this territory. It brings with it the opportunity for FremantleMedia to showcase its world-renowned creativity to millions of new viewers, with content that is made specifically for them," said Cecile Frot-Coutaz, global CEO, FremantleMedia.

Wang Jianjun, president of SMG, said: "We envision BesTV to be a new media conglomerate after the restructuring and China's foremost OTT service provider. It will build a new media eco-system in which BesTV straddles over content production, distribution channels, and products and services.

"As format and idea development is a key part in content production, the joint venture will undoubtedly bring the best resources from all the companies together and gives a strong boost to BesTV. The collaboration will give SMG the wonderful opportunity to learn how to create good ideas and how to grow these ideas into formats and productions. It will greatly enhance SMG's production capacity and help SMG make phenomenal variety shows in the future."

The deal represents a powerful "opportunity to create and execute story telling that focuses on Chinese values and tastes blended with western structure and creativity," said Ian Hogg, CEO, FremantleMedia Asia Pacific.

FremantleMedia has already licensed around 20 titles with Chinese broadcasters, including Got Talent, Idols and The X Factor, Don't Stop Me Now, Take Me Out, Hole in the Wall and Family Feud.