Viacom, Charter to Co-Produce Original Content With Exclusive Window for Cable Giant

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Charter chairman and CEO Tom Rutledge

The entertainment company will distribute it internationally and in additional domestic markets, including potentially on Viacom networks, after Charter's exclusive premiere window.

Viacom and Charter Communications have struck a partnership to co-produce original content that will exclusively premiere for subscribers of the cable giant in the U.S.

Under the agreement, Viacom's Paramount Television and Charter will jointly produce the programming, with Viacom distributing it internationally, as well as in additional domestic markets, including potentially on Viacom networks, after Charter's exclusive premiere window, the companies said Tuesday.

The companies also said they have agreed to collaborate on the use of anonymized viewership data on advanced advertising opportunities and on "addressing unauthorized password sharing."

The partnerships were unveiled as part of the finalization of a carriage deal between Charter and Viacom. Financial terms weren't disclosed.

Under the agreement, the companies said Charter's Spectrum cable subscribers will get access to Viacom's MTV, Nickelodeon, BET, Comedy Central, Spike (Paramount Network), VH1, TV Land and CMT networks across Charter's markets.

"Additional Viacom networks will continue to be available on Spectrum Silver or Spectrum Gold tiers," higher-priced subscriber tiers offered by Charter, they said. "Subscribers will continue to enjoy on-demand access to Viacom's content on both set-top boxes and through both Charter's and Viacom's authenticated apps."

Viacom and Charter, led by chairman and CEO Tom Rutledge, had been at odds since the cable company put some of the conglomerate's cable channels — Comedy Central, Spike, VH1, MTV — in a higher-priced tier earlier this year. Charter acquired Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks last year, giving its Spectrum-branded service roughly 26 million subscribers in about 41 states.

Charter in April struck a similar co-production deal with AMC Networks.

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