Disney Launches Branded Free-to-Air Channel in Turkey

The local-language version of the Disney channel will launch next year with a reach of 11 million households in Turkey.

COLOGNE, Germany – Disney Channel will launch an advertising-supported version of its branded kids channel in Turkey, one of Europe’s fastest growing markets, early next year.

The channel will be carried on Free Sat and will reach around 11 million homes, or more than 60 percent of Turkish TV households, on its launch Jan. 12. With the bow, Disney Channel’s penetration will pass 100 million homes across Europe, the Middle East and Africa, a three-fold increase over 2009.

Disney's new Turkish channel will carry dubbed versions of  series such as Wizards of Waverly Place and Shake It Up and Disney-produced features including the High School Musical series.

The vast majority of European homes get their Disney fix via pay TV. But the Mouse House has been experimenting with free TV models in some territories. In 2008 Disney successfully launched an ad-backed channel in Spain. Europe’s leading children’s broadcaster is Germany’s free-to-air Super RTL, a 50-50 joint venture between Disney and Bertelsmann-controlled RTL Group.