Executives from ProSiebenSat.1 had in the past few weeks begun “meaningful co-operation” on advertising, technology and even content with colleagues from MFE, ProSiebenSat.1 CEO Bert Habets (pictured) told the Financial Times.
“I think our industry is changing really at a very fast pace,” said Habets, adding that the rise of streaming giants such as Netflix had altered how advertisers assigned their budgets. “We, as a local player, need to seek solutions on how to continue to get access to these global budgets being allocated on a more pan-European basis.”
He said that tech and product development was another area where co-operation with partners made more sense rather than coming up with individual solutions country by country. Habets even broached the idea of deeper co-operation on content.
While acknowledging that a pan-European approach to programming was “still difficult”, Habets said: “We’ve also seen through Netflix that Spanish series can be hugely successful in many, many countries across Europe. And Scandi noir content is widely spread across Europe, and even the US. So I think we need to also learn… how, in the future, content can be developed not only locally, but also maybe with future partners.”
MFE, the media empire founded by Silvio Berlusconi, has been constantly building up its shareholding in ProSiebenSat.1 in the past months, now nearing the threshold of 30% for making a mandatory full takeover offer. Habets said, however, that this had “never been part of our discussions” with MFE.