True, RTL join hands on content expansion

Adding more foreign shows to TV line-up

RTL CBS Asia Entertainment Network, a Singaporean media company, has entered Thailand's broadcasting industry by forming a partnership with TrueVisions, a leading pay-TV operator.

Engwall: ‘We had to find the right partner.’

TrueVisions has the broadcast rights of two exclusive high-definition channels, RTL CBS Entertainment HD and RTL CBS Extreme HD, for its premium subscribers with Platinum HD, Gold HD and New Super Family packages.

The entertainment channel, which has already begun airing, presents a mix of shows highlighted by RTL-produced content such as the The X Factor, America's Got Talent and Celebrity Apprentice as well as CBS-produced series Elementary and Under the Dome.

Another channel, which will focus on action-adventure shows, reality competitions and extreme sports, will be launched early next year.

Jonas Engwall, the chief executive of RTL CBS Asia, said his company was formed last month between Europe's largest broadcaster, the RTL group, and CBS Studios International, which plans to focus on the rapidly growing Southeast Asian market.

"Thailand is the second country in Asia [after Malaysia] to have acquired our channels to broadcast on a local platform. To have strong growth in the region, we had to find the right partner, which is TrueVisions," he said.

RTL CBS Asia aims to expand its strong content across 29 Asian markets including Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Vietnam and Thailand.

The company's policy is to build a content line-up in many segments in Asia instead of selling each programme separately. This method will generate more revenue and create a solid presence in new markets.

Its content will come from newly produced shows and library titles from RTL Group's content arm FremantleMedia and from CBS, which has a catalogue of more than 70,000 hours.

Attaphon na Bangxang, chief programming officer at TrueVisions, said the acquired content will strengthen its platform, particularly the entertainment and sport segments. The company plans to diversify its content to appeal to children, teenagers, first-jobbers and families to reinforce its positioning.

Next month, TrueVisions will add one exclusive, made-to-order channel from HBO called the Red Channel, providing Korean, Japanese and Chinese series.

About the author

Writer: Saengwit Kewaleewongsatorn
Position: Business Reporter