Discovery to Acquire German TV Network Tele 5

Fred Kogel, CEO Leonine
@Leonine, Photographer: Thomas Dashuber

Discovery Germany plans on using the purchase of the free-TV channel from mini-major Leonine "to diversify its offering and pursue new target audience groups and marketing potential."

Discovery has agreed to acquire German general entertainment channel Tele 5 from German mini-major Leonine, controlled by private equity group KKR.

Financial terms of the deal, unveiled on Friday, weren't disclosed. 

Discovery Germany said it "plans on using this acquisition in the German free-TV market to diversify its offering and pursue new target audience groups and marketing potential by integrating the established free-TV channel Tele 5 into the brand portfolio of Discovery Germany." The company's German unit includes such free-TV networks as DMAX, TLC, Eurosport and HGTV.

The two parties also struck a long-term program supply agreement, allowing Discovery Germany to access Leonine's library of fictional content. 

"I am very pleased with the expansion of our portfolio into another established brand," said Susanne Aigner, managing director of Discovery Germany. "Tele 5 with its films and series complements our multi-platform offer of factual entertainment and sports content with a new fictional component. This enables us to tap new target audience groups and expand our marketing potential with the reach of Tele 5." 

Leonine is led by TV industry veteran Fred Kogel.

"Our remaining portfolio in the broadcasting sector is geared to enabling further growth in Leonine's core business areas while displaying a strong performance," said Markus Frerker, COO of Leonine. He emphasized that the firm's three subscription VOD services, Filmtastic, Home of Horror and Arthouse CNMA, as well as its minority stake in RTLZwei "will remain a central part of our corporate strategy."