MIPCOM 2012 – Cannes. Strong original programming from the US and local productions are driving growth at A+E Networks’ channels, according to Dean Possenniskie, managing director EMEA at A+E Networks.
Last summer History was extremely successful ratings-wise in the US, and the question now is “how do we replicate that success in the western European market?”
The successful Pawn Stars series will see a UK version, which is now in the early stages of production with Left Field. Other successful local production were The 11th day in Germany and Matadores for Bio in Spain.
The broadcaster has also just commissioned Miracle Rising: South Africa, a documentary about the end of apartheid in South Africa and the turn into democracy, which is to air internationally in 2013.
A European launch for Lifetime is still on the cards, but as yet no firm dates. “The channel has now launched in Canada, which is the first step,” said Possenniskie.”It will be sometime in 2013 and we are talking to operators in some big markets.”
A+E Networks is also looking at launching H2 outside the US as an extension of the History brand. The channel will focus on the more traditional documentary style of programming.
When these two channels have launched, A+E Networks will not plan any more niche channels. “We won’t go any further than that and concentrate on our core channels. Operators are not looking for more channels anymore, there are enough niche channels available over-the-top, but they want to have quality channels that offer something new.”
With regards to catch-up, VOD and TV everywhere service, Possenniskie said most of the current deals include all new platforms, “and we are in the position to sell these rights, as we own all the rights ourselves.”