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From Sing out Loud in China to Essence of Success in the Middle East, the X Factor‘s steady march toward global domination is almost complete. The numbers tell the tale: 26 versions worldwide, with three more launches this year and 127 more countries slated to carry the U.S. version. Many channels see as much as a 250 percent average audience boost when X Factor airs on their network. The key, according to FremantleMedia North America CEO Cecile Frot-Coutaz, is embracing diversity. “Each territory has its own circumstances that dictate how you market and produce the shows. Sometimes there’s give and take, and compromises have to be made.” So will the U.S. debut complete the expansion? Not a chance. “I think the successful U.S. launch will definitely fuel more markets,” she says. “That’s the goal.”
Armenia, The X Factor
The Armenian version bowed in November, with peak audiences that outperformed the broadcaster’s primetime average by up to 73 percent.
Australia, The X Factor
X Factor has already aired two successful seasons Down Under, including episodes devoted to the homes of judges. Richard Branson’s digs in the Virgin Islands were featured, and Snoop Dogg made an appearance from L.A.
Belgium, The X Factor
It’s peak ratings share was 73 percent higher than the broadcaster’s average among viewers ages 15-34.
Chile, Factor X Chile
After launching in March on TVN 7, Factor X outperformed the TVN primetime average by a third.
China, Sing Out Loud in China
Airing on LRTV, Sing Out Loud is the No. 2 program in its time slot.
Columbia, The X Factor
The No. 1 show in its time period in its first season, Colombian X Factor garnered 70 percent of young adults 18-to-24 and hit 3.3 million viewers.
Czech Republic, The X Factor
Aired on local broadcaster Nova, the show attracted 1.9 million viewers — more than 50 percent higher than Nova’s average in primetime.
Denmark, X Factor Denmark
The No. 1 Danish program the past four years won a peak ratings share that was 257 percent higher than the broadcaster’s average among adults 15-50.
Finland, The X Factor
Last year X Factor was the No. 1 Finish show for the 15-34 demographic.
France, The X Factor
It wrapped its second season in June with peak shares 38 percent above broadcaster M6’s average.
Germany, The X Factor
Season one was the top-rated show on broadcaster VOX; the second season begins Aug. 30. Judges included singer Sarah Connor and local rapper Das Bo.
Greece, The X Factor
Now in its third season. Season one winner Loukas Giorkas represented Greece in the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest.
Hungary, The X Factor
A blockbuster in its first season, the show averaged a market share 76 percent than broadcaster RTL Klub’s primetime average
Iceland, The X Factor
After winning the first season with an overwhelming 70 percent of the vote, Jogvan Hansen’s album and single went to No. 1 in Iceland.
India, X Factor India
After launching in May, X Factor India airs twice a week. Judges include Bollywood filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bansali and local singer Shreya.
Italy, The X Factor
Season one runner-up Giusy Ferreri has become one of the most successful female singers in Italy.
Kazakhstan, The X Factor
The country’s No. 1 program in 2011, it attained a peak share of up to 52 percent, besting broadcaster EurAsia’s primetime average by 50 percent.
Netherlands, The X Factor
A huge hit for four seasons, the latest finale garnered a whopping 37% share.
Norway, The X Factor
Season two achieved a peak ratings share of almost 60 percent among adults 15-24, 144 percent higher than the broadcaster’s average.
Pan Arab, Essence of Success
Featuring hip-hop star Nelly at the judges’ table, the show is broadcast across 22 countries in the Mideast, the Gulf states and North Africa.
Poland, The X Factor
After debuting this year, the finale attracted almost double broadcaster TVN’s average audience share.
Russia, X Factor Russia
Season three of X Factor Russia launched to an audience of 4.7 million, its highest ever.
Spain, The X Factor
A strong performer among young adults, the show outperformed broadcaster Cuatro’s primetime average by 175 percent.
Ukraine, X Factor Ukraine
Outperforming broadcaster STB’s averages by up to 342 percent, it peaked with an audience of 4.7 million.
United Kingdom, The X Factor
Season seven was the most successful yet, with 21 million tuning in for the 2010 finale, while season 3 winner Leona Lewis is its best-selling alumna, moving 12 million copies worldwide of her 2007 debut album, Spirit.
United States, The X Factor
The pressure is on to produce big numbers, but it’s about buzz, too. Says Cowell: “I hope the show becomes interesting enough that you have an opinion, whether you like it or not. That way it becomes more than just a TV show.”
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