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Turner Broadcasting appoints Alexander Goethel Alexander Goethel has been appointed programming director of entertainment at Turner Broadcasting’s Central and Eastern

  1. #5441
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    Turner Broadcasting appoints Alexander Goethel

    Alexander Goethel has been appointed programming director of entertainment at Turner Broadcasting’s Central and Eastern European arm.


    He is responsible for linear and non-linear programming, dubbing and acquisitions across a portfolio of entertainment channels including TNT Serie, TNT Film and TNT Glitz in German-speaking countries, as well as TCM (from October 6, TNT) in Poland and Romania. He also oversees the comedy umbrella brand Adult Swim across the region.

    Goethel joins Turner Broadcasting from Studio 100 Media GmbH where he was director of new business development. His previous remits include pan-European programme acquisition for ProSiebenSat.1’s digital platforms and, more recently, EMEA lead for strategic development and expansion of transactional video-on-demand activities for Google Play and YouTube. He reports directly to Hannes Heyelmann, Senior Vice President and Managing Director of Turner Broadcasting in Central and Eastern Europe.

    MarionRathmannIn November, Marion Rathmann will also join the Turner Central and Eastern European team as Senior Programme Planning Manager of Entertainment. She will be responsible for programming of the regional TNT portfolio and report to Goethel.

    Rathmann is joining Turner from thematic channel Motorvision TV where she has been responsible for programme planning. She has previously worked for over 10 years for German commercial broadcaster Tele 5.

    Hannes Heyelmann, SVP and managing director of Turner Broadcasting in Central and Eastern Europe said: “With his experience from ProSiebenSat.1, Google and Studio 100, Alexander Goethel is a recognised expert in the areas of content acquisition and new digital media. As Programming Director, he will provide important new impetus for the future strategy of our entertainment channels. Together with Marion Rathmann, who is a highly experienced programme planner, they are perfectly positioned to lead our entertainment team.”

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    ProSiebenSat.1 to drop HD encryption on October 3/4

    German commercial TV group ProSiebenSat.1 will drop the encryption of the HD versions of its free-to-air channels on October 3/4, 2015, a ProSiebenSat.1 spokesperson confirmed to Broadband TV News.

    The move takes place at the occasion of the German reunification day on October 3, 2015, a national public holiday.

    Sat.1 HD, ProSieben HD, kabel eins HD, sixx HD, ProSieben Maxx HD and Sat.1 Gold HD will be available unencrypted and free of charge on October 3 and 4, 2015 on all platforms via cable, satellite and IPTV.

    Recently, RTL Nitro lifted the encryption of its HD signal during three qualifier matches for the UEFA European Football Championship 2016. With the moves, the commercial broadcasters want to attract more viewers to their HD services.

    The digitalisation report of the German media authorities recently unveiled that there is a huge gap between the number of HD households and the number of viewers receiving the commercial HD channels: 48.1% of TV households receive HD channels, but only 18.8% have opted to watch the commercial channels in high resolution. The reluctance is probably based on the monthly fee the commercial broadcasters charge for reception of the HD versions of their advertising-funded free-to-air TV channels.

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    Turkcell eyes TeliaSonera assets

    TeliaSonera is to increase the focus on its Regions Europe and Sweden operations. At the same time, it has decided to reduce its presence in the Region Eurasia operation and over time leave the region.

    Local reports in Turkey indicate that Turkcell, the country’s largest mobile operator and in which TeliaSonera holds a 38% stake, has already expressed an interest in acquiring some of TeliaSonera’s Eurasian assets, which are located in Nepal, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Tajikistan.

    Commenting on the change in strategy, Johan Dennelind.TeliaSonera’s president and CEO, said: “Thanks to two years of hard work to improve the Eurasian operations, not least from a corporate governance and sustainability perspective, we now have better and more well-managed companies which we believe others can successfully develop further.

    “We realise that this will be a complex task that will take time. We are conducting this process market by market as each country and operation has its unique situation, but the ambition is to eventually leave the entire region.

    Marie Ehrling, TeliaSonera’s chair of the board, added: “The board of directors has thoroughly examined what is best for our shareholders, operations, employees and customers. We have initiated a process to reduce TeliaSonera’s presence in Region Eurasia in order to effectively execute on our strategy. It is very positive that TeliaSonera’s focused work to improve sustainability has enabled the next step in the reshaping of TeliaSonera”.

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    IPTV moving in on traditional platform operators

    Traditional operators will need to keep a close eye on telcos rising interest in the TV space as operators’ make their mark both in Western Europe and other key regions, according to research by Futuresource.

    Following a number of false starts in Western Europe, IPTV homes are now a viable platform, hitting 27 million in 2014, 15% of all TV households. With growth of 30% expected between now and 2019, IPTV subscribers will outperform both cable and satellite which will see a decline in subscribers of 9% and growth of 6% respectively. In the US, IPTV households reached over 12 million at year end 2014 – 13% of Pay-TV households with an expected rise to over 15% by 2019.

    Most significant in Europe has been the rise of Altice and Vodafone which at year-end 2014 had a combined footprint in Europe of 14 million TV homes; in part created by continued aggressive acquisitions of several key operators. The USD $58 billion spent by Altice spans Portugal (Meo) and France (Numericable-SFR) in Europe and further afield Israel (Hot), USA (Suddenlink) and the newest edition in the USA, Cablevision. With Vodafone’s USD $20 billion spend securing significant share in both Spain (Ono) and Germany (Kabel Deutschland).

    Their acquisitions now raise these two telcos ranking in the share of Western Europe’s Pay-TV households placing both in the top five with Sky, Liberty Global and France Telecom. In the US, with the combined footprint of Suddenlink and Cablevision, Altice now has over 3.7 million TV subscribers ranking it in the top five US cable operators and securely in the top 10 of overall MSOs.

    The flurry of M&A activity is unlikely to be over, as rumours circulate of Altice’s potential acquisition of US mobile giant Verizon’s wireline (FIOS) division in addition to KPN (Netherlands) and Liberty Global continues to be on the radar of Vodafone. The recent acquisition of Turkish satellite operator Digiturk by Al Jazeera could also see the Middle East based media group making further moves west into the higher value markets.

    The battle for multi-play service deployment has played a significant role in the rise in ‘telco TV’ as operators utilise TV service bundles to attract and retain broadband subscribers; in some instances offsetting the cost of TV against higher margin broadband services. This has taken a further leap forward with the introduction of Netflix on several Pay-TV platforms across Europe. The imminent introduction of the service on Vodafone in Spain will be its 13th key European partnership across nine countries, reaching over 20 million homes.

    Though such a strategy does limit differentiation it has enabled a low-cost, low-risk entry point for operators to offer video services. Despite this, rising investment in premium and exclusive content is anticipated, as major operators continue to utilise content to drive revenue and act as a differentiator to their service, a strategy telcos in established markets are likely to have to follow to retain subscribers.

    Futuresource recently completed its annual audit of the Western European and US Pay-TV Landscape, assessing the current and future outlook at individual country level. The report comprises a detailed database and accompanying management report incorporating analyst trends and insights relating to traditional pay-TV and the wider home entertainment landscape. (Source: Futuresource Consulting)

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    Turner beefs up management in Central, Eastern Europe

    Turner Broadcasting System International’s Central and Eastern European arm has been given a shot with the appointment of new programming executives in the region.


    Turner Broadcasting System International (TBS) operates more than 170 channels showcasing 32 brands in 37 languages in over 200 countries. It operates versions of core TBS brands including CNN, TNT, Cartoon Network and Turner Classic Movies, as well as country- and region-specific networks and businesses in Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) and Asia-Pacific. It teams with Warner Bros. and HBO to use Time Warner’s global reach.

    In the shake-up, Alexander Goethel is to become new Programming Director, Entertainment while Marion Rathmann is to join as Senior Programme Planning Manager, Entertainment.

    Joining from Studio 100 Media where he was Director of New Business Development, Goethel will be responsible for linear and non-linear programming, dubbing and acquisitions across a portfolio of entertainment channels. These will include TNT Serie, TNT Film and TNT Glitz in German-speaking countries, as well as TCM — and from 6 October pay-TV channel TNT — in Poland and Romania. He also oversees the comedy umbrella brand Adult Swim across the region.

    Rathmann, formerly with thematic channel Motorvision TV, where she had been responsible for programme planning, will be responsible for programming of the regional TNT portfolio and report to Goethel.

    Commenting on the appointment, Hannes Heyelmann, Senior Vice President and Managing Director of Turner Broadcasting in Central and Eastern Europe said: "With his experience from ProSiebenSat.1, Google and Studio 100, Alexander Goethel is a recognised expert in the areas of content acquisition and new digital media. As Programming Director, he will provide important new impetus for the future strategy of our entertainment channels. Together with Marion Rathmann, who is a highly experienced programme planner, they are perfectly positioned to lead our entertainment team."

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    BBC aces Wimbledon coverage until 2020

    Returning with vengeance the volleys of criticism of those who say it doesn’t do sport any more, the BBC has extended its deal to show the Wimbledon tennis tournament until 2020.


    Showing exactly how keen the BBC was to add two years onto the contract, no less a figure than BBC Director General Tony Hall said: “There is something very special about having major sporting events on the BBC, and in what are difficult financial times, this is a deal that represents the BBC’s commitment to sport in what is an incredibly competitive market.”

    Continuation of the longest partnership in sports broadcasting history will keep Wimbledon free to air in the UK, and The Championships will continue to be played out across BBC One, BBC Two, BBC Red Button and the BBC Sport website with live radio coverage rights also extended on Radio 5 live.

    The 2015 tournament was also something of a technical showcase with 15 live HDTV streams available across all devices, multi-court video player, text commentary, live votes and audience interaction via dedicated social media. It will see Wimbledon coverage continue to develop in the digital age, enabling audiences to follow an unprecedented amount of action, whenever and wherever they want, across all platforms.

    Commenting on why Wimbledon’s organisers stuck with the BBC, Richard Lewis, Chief Executive of the All England Club, said: “Our long partnership with the BBC has brought the excitement and drama of The Championships to viewers and listeners for over 80 years and we are delighted to be extending our successful association for a further three years until 2020. The BBC consistently delivers large national audiences for Wimbledon and they deliver those audiences with high-quality production values, live across multiple platforms and always with a strong narrative. Importantly, as host broadcaster for The Championships, the BBC also ensures that we can provide a comprehensive and premium service to our global media partners.”

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    FremantleMedia takes majority stake in Dutch factual producer

    Continuing its programme of tapping into regional talent, FremantleMedia has taken a 75% stake in Dutch business No Pictures Please.


    The factual programming company owned by popular presenter and producer Ewout Genemans is best known for alternative lifestyle content such as De Roze Wildernis, Super Fans: Mijn idool is mijn leven, and From Russia With Love.

    The acquisition will see No Pictures Please sit alongside FremantleMedia’s entertainment and scripted businesses in the Netherlands, Blue Circle and FourOne.Media. The deal is the latest in a number of recent investments by FremantleMedia including scripted businesses Wildside, Fontaram and Corona Pictures.

    The No Pictures Please deal was brokered by Georgette Schlick, CEO of Blue Circle, who commented: “Ewout has been on Dutch screens for more than 10 years and has developed a very keen eye for what audiences want. We’re delighted to be working with him and excited for what he will continue to produce for the Dutch and global market.”

    Genemans added: “Being a part of Blue Circle and ultimately FremantleMedia presents a great opportunity to work with a fantastic Dutch operation as well as a globally established network of some of the best creative minds in television.”

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    Spain's watchdog ruins La Liga plans

    Mediaset's free-to-air (FTA) DTT channels in Spain have been granted permission to re-enter football stadiums by the country's competition authority, CNMC.


    The private TV group had been banned by La Liga as public broadcaster RTVE kept exclusivity on match recaps.

    Following Spain's general law for audiovisual communication, the CNMC has forced La Liga to allow FTA channels Cuatro and TeleCinco to film inside all first and second division football stadiums.

    When La Liga sold its rights, Telefónica won the live game broadcasting rights and later resold them to Spain's main pay-TV operators. RTVE acquired the rights to extensive recaps of every game. Then, La Liga decided to only allow 90-second broadcasts of football content every weekend for the other FTA networks, in order to protect RTVE's exclusivity.

    When Mediaset said it wouldn't accept the conditions, La Liga banned the group from entering the football fields.

    "Providers of audiovisual communication services are allowed to enter, within the authorised area, every space in which general interest events are taking place", said the CNMC.

    At present the ruling is temporary and the CNMC will issue a final decision within three months.

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    RTVE goes for 4K HDR, Atmos sound for Ultra HD documentary

    Premiering at IBC 2015, the documentary La Granja, filmed by RTVE in Ultra HD, aims to show how the latest 4K technologies can result in a commercial audiovisual product.


    The piece has been filmed in 4K High Dynamic Range (HDR) Dolby Vision, in order to compensate for the difference between the lightest and darkest zones in the picture. Colour space 2020, which enables more colours to be broadcast, and Dolby Atmos sound have been used in order to increase the surrounding feeling.

    The 25-minute documentary has been filmed by RTVE together with Dolby, Hispasat and Sony, also counting on Ovide, Drago, FilmLight, AdHoc, Service Vision and Coyot Aire. The original soundtrack has been composed by Javier García Verdugo.

    The short film shows the building of La Granja Palace, north of Madrid, from the inside and outside, bringing into Ultra HD the spectacular natural surroundings and the gardens.

    During the last two years, RTVE's commitment to 4K technology has been growing. Spain's public broadcaster has already premiered an Ultra HD documentary, La Pasión del Prado, launched a pilot DTT network in 4Kin 4K, and collaborated with other operators to improve the new broadcasting standard.

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    Telemundo preps simultaneous linear, VOD, online, social TV premiere

    For the first time, US Hispanic network Telemundo is to offer a simultaneous premiere on linear TV, video-on-demand (VOD), online platform Telemundo.com and social networks Twitter, Periscope and YouTube.


    As part of the premiere of the second season of its series Senora Acero, the channel will present a special Noche de Acero programming block on 22 September. The special will be followed with a two-hour recap of the series' season one, and then, the network will air the premiere simultaneously on all the named platforms.

    The NBCUniversal Hispanic channel has also created several marketing elements to complement the premiere of the second season. It has created an interactive digital comic book integrating the latest parallax and web technologies and a Facebook app detailing the first season.

    Produced for Telemundo Studios by Argos Television, Senora Acero was written by Roberto Stopello (La Reina del Sur) and directed by Miguel Varoni and Carlos Villegas. The series stars Blanca Soto and a cast including Litzy, Lincoln Palomeque, Jose Luis Resendez, Jorge Zarate, Aurora Gil and Alejandro Calva.


 

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