Channel 4 takes stake in Emap channels


LONDON -- Channel 4 is expanding its music channel business with the £28 million ($57.6 million) acquisition of a 50% stake in seven themed music TV channels from Emap, it was announced Monday.

The joint venture partnership seeks to grow the music channel portfolio -- which includes the Hits, the Box, Smash Hits and Kerrang! -- and develop multiplatform opportunities in tandem with Channel 4's digital radio service set to launch next year.

"This is a strategic investment for Channel 4, designed to generate significant revenues that can be reinvested in supporting our public service activity longer term," Channel 4 CEO Andy Duncan said. "Music is an important part of Channel 4's strategy for future growth and we intend to further strengthen our cross-platform presence with the launch of three 4-branded radio stations from next year."

Emap head of consumer media Paul Keenan said the joint venture will open up new markets such as VOD.

"This alliance between Emap and Channel 4 will enable us to increase our music brands' presence on new and emerging platforms, including video-on-demand, opening up new opportunities outside of the traditional linear broadcast market for both audience and revenue growth," Keenan said.
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