Post-merger ProSieben preps new women's net

'Housewives,' 'Grey's' making move

In what is seen as the first sign of real synergy between ProSiebenSat.1 and SBS Broadcasting since last month's merger, ProSieben on Thursday announced plans to launch a women's channel in the German market based on a successful SBS format.

The channel, Neun TV, plans to go live late this year and will be run by call-in channel 9Live, a ProSiebenSat.1 subsidiary.

According to 9Live managing director Marcus Wolter, Neun TV will target "the modern woman over 30" and be based on the successful SBS channel format, which airs as Net 5 in the Netherlands, Viif TV in Belgium and Kanal 4 in Denmark.

The new channel will allow ProSiebenSat.1 to repackage its German rights to such hit female-skewing U.S. series as "Grey's Anatomy," "Desperate Housewives" and "Sex and the City."

Unlike 9Live, which is financed by viewers calling in to play on-air game shows, Neun TV will be a traditional advertising-backed channel.

The channel will face competition for female viewers, in particular from Cologne-based network Vox, which airs such favorites in the demo as "Gilmore Girls," "Ally McBeal" and "The Closer."