CBS, Europe's RTL Group Partner on Asian TV Channels
CBS Corp.'s CBS Studios International and European TV giant RTL Group have launched a joint venture that will see the TV giants team up on a pair of thematic channels targeting the fast-growing markets of South East Asia.
The venture, announced by CBS and RTL Tuesday, will next month launch general entertainment channel RTL CBS Entertainment, which will feature programming from RTL's production unit FremantleMedia, including The X Factor and Celebrity Apprentice, alongside CBS hit shows, such as Elementary and Entertainment Tonight.
RTL CBS Extreme, an action-adventure and extreme sports channel, will bow in spring with a lineup of shows including NCIS: Los Angeles, Hawaii Five-0 and Fear Factor.
“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," said Armando Nunez, president and CEO of the CBS Global Distribution Group in a statement. "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.”
Both channels will operate under the auspices of the new joint venture, the Singapore-based RTL CBS Asia Entertainment Network. They will air in English, in local languages and in HD. Distribution, via cable, satellite and IPTV networks in the region, is targeting up to 29 Asian markets, including Hong Kong, Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand, Taiwan and Singapore.
The networks will have access to first-run shows and library titles from both CBS and FremantleMedia. The joint venture requires local regulatory approval. Once up and running, the Asian management team will report to a board of directors made up of executives from both CBS and RTL.
"We are delighted to team up with CBS Studios International," said Guillaume de Posch, co-CEO of RTL Group. “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."