HBO, Sky Extend Partnership in Pan-European Deal

HBO
'True Detective'

The agreement is the first pan-European content deal covering all Sky territories negotiated since the combination of the Sky platforms in the U.K., Italy and Germany.

HBO and European pay TV giant Sky have extended their relationship by agreeing a new deal that makes their Sky Atlantic network the home of HBO for 21 million Sky customers across Europe.

The new deal means that Sky will have the exclusive rights to air first-run HBO programs in Germany, Austria and Italy until 2020. Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland had deals with Europe similar to that of the former BSkyB in the U.K. and Ireland, but the new deal brings all markets in line with the U.K. and Ireland.

The agreement is the first pan-European content deal covering all Sky territories that Sky has negotiated since it was created when BSkyB acquired from 21st Century Fox Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland. Fox owns a 39 percent stake in Sky.

The new deal also includes more HBO content on demand for all Sky customers across Europe. The Sky Atlantic network was originally created by the former BSkyB and HBO as the home of HBO content in the U.K. and Ireland before later also coming to Sky Deutschland and Sky Italia. It shows the likes of Game of Thrones, True Detective and Boardwalk Empire.

About the new deal, the companies said: "For Sky customers, it means that new HBO shows will be shown first on Sky Atlantic and where possible, will be aired simultaneously with the U.S. It also means more access to the entire wealth of HBO’s stellar library of TV series for all Sky customers. Along with extensive preview and premiere rights, there will be more entire boxsets available on the Sky platforms in all markets for longer periods. Customers will have extra time to enjoy previous seasons of hit shows such as Boardwalk Empire, The Sopranos, Veep, The Newsroom and Girls at their leisure, in and out of the home."

For the first time, all the episodes of current seasons, such as True Detective, will be available to view on demand, stacked as the season airs.

Charles Schreger, president of programming sales at HBO, said: "As a partner, Sky has always shown the greatest of respect and appreciation for the HBO brand. They have shined a spotlight on our original programming and treated the shows as preciously as if they were their own. This ongoing relationship has been rewarding and successful to both of us, and this expansion is representative of the trust and admiration we have for them as well as a belief that we can elevate each other even further."

Said Gary Davey, managing director, content at Sky: "HBO continues to deliver many of the most-talked about and exciting TV shows anywhere in the world. This new agreement, Sky’s first pan-European content deal, confirms Sky Atlantic as the home of HBO in all our markets both live and on demand. Sky and HBO share many common values, as well as a passion for high-quality television like Game of Thrones and Veep. Our partnership, in its sixth year, now escalates to a whole new level."

He added: "HBO has an amazing slate planned for 2016, including Vinyl and Westworld, but it will also see the premiere of our first co-production together, The Young Pope, starring Jude Law.”

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