27 November 2007
ITV plc - 27 November 2007
ITV Forms Joint Venture with BBC Worldwide and C4 to Launch On-Demand Service
• New UK on-demand service - a single destination for over ten thousand
hours of quality entertainment content
• Historic joint venture between three of the UK's largest broadcasters
• First time that viewers will have access to a large range of catch-up
and archive programming
• Venture will be a major competitor in UK on-demand content market
BBC Worldwide, ITV and Channel 4 today announced the creation of a commercial
three-way joint venture to launch an on-demand content service in 2008 with the
working title of 'Kangaroo'. The service will bring together an exciting
collection of over ten thousand hours of the very best of the UK broadcasters'
current and archive programming, with the convenience, simplicity and ease of
use of one overarching service. These plans are subject to formal approval from
the BBC Trust and each broadcaster's board.
The UK service will carry a broad range of programming and will be a rich
entertainment site where consumers can catch up on recently aired shows and
watch old favourites. The joint venture will be owned equally and will work
independently as an aggregator of both joint venture partners and third party
content and will encourage other quality content providers to join the service
to further enhance the viewer experience. Initially the service will launch as
a web based proposition and will be available for distribution on other
platforms. Content will be available both streamed and downloaded and viewers
will be able to watch for free, rent or buy. A name and brand for the new
service will be unveiled before launch.
The consumer proposition is built on the breadth and depth of programming that
will be accessible in one place. This will be underpinned by each broadcaster's
extensive knowledge of programming, understanding of viewer behaviour and
marketing capabilities. The new venture will create a seamless viewer experience
and will be an attractive proposition for advertisers, content rights owners and
By joining forces, the joint venture will access each broadcaster's
understanding and experience of providing on-demand content and will be an
important player in a new and developing market. It will compete in the rapidly
expanding online content space, where it will compete against a large and
growing range of TV, film and other audio-visual content. The new service will
be able to share the cost of the latest technology and enable rapid
technological enhancements whilst building on the experience of 4OD, ITV.com and
the BBC's iPlayer.
John Smith, Chief Executive Officer of BBC Worldwide said, 'This is a historic
partnership between the UK's largest broadcasters. For some time we have wanted
to form an alliance with other rights holders in the UK and give viewers an
on-demand service with real added value. The new service will contain some of
the very best of the UK's content for consumers to view in one place, which will
be both easy to use and great fun. By combining our joint resources we're really
taking control of our destiny in a market that's moving at a fast pace.'
Michael Grade, Executive Chairman of ITV plc said, 'This key strategic move is
complementary to our investment in itv.com and further strengthens ITV's
customer proposition online. The joint service has the potential to become an
important shop window for UK broadcaster content and a great destination for
viewers. The deal is structured so that we each benefit from content being
viewed, ensuring that there is significant revenue potential in the growth of
the venture for all involved. The joint venture will play an important role,
alongside itv.com, Friends Reunited and ITV Local, in delivering our online
revenue targets as outlined by us in September.'
Andy Duncan, Channel 4 Chief Executive said, 'TV on the internet is a rapidly
growing medium as proven by the incredible success that Channel 4 has enjoyed
with its 4oD service. We want to continue to build and innovate in this area,
giving viewers ultimate control over what they watch and when they watch it, and
believe that partnering and sharing expertise is the best way of doing this. We
believe this deal will lead to a major step change in the on-demand services
offered by UK broadcasters and is good news for independents and the creative
community, for advertisers and, above all, for viewers.'
The new service will complement BBC iPlayer, the free catch-up TV service
offering hundreds of programmes a week from the last seven days. BBC iPlayer
content will be listed within the new service. ITV.com will continue to feature
a 30 day catch up facility alongside simulcasts of ITV1, ITV2, ITV3 and ITV4 and
a wealth of news, clips, stills, exclusive content and interactivity across and
around ITV programming. Channel 4's website will host a catch-up service
including accompanying comprehensive programme information and clips, whilst 4oD
will evolve into the new service.
The joint venture has appointed Lesley MacKenzie as Launch CEO and is currently
recruiting top executives to lead the joint venture team. Previously Lesley was
in India launching TataSky and prior to this was Director of Channels and
Operations at BSkyB.
For further information:
Esther Brown, BBC Worldwide,
020 8433 2506, 07967 822 719 email@example.com
Alison Jeremy, BBC Worldwide,
020 8433 2719, 07736480228, Alison.firstname.lastname@example.org
Hannah Bailey, ITV
0844 881 8439 07940 716006 email@example.com
Jim Godfrey, ITV
0844 881 8434 07876396521 firstname.lastname@example.org
Sarah Booth, Channel 4
0207 306 5395, email@example.com
Notes to Editors
About BBC Worldwide
BBC Worldwide Limited is the commercial arm and a wholly owned subsidiary of the
British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). The company exists to maximise the value
of the BBC's intellectual property and exploits content around the world on
behalf of rights holders. The company has six core businesses: Global Channels,
Global TV Sales, Magazines, Content & Production, Home Entertainment and Digital
Media. In 2006/07, BBC Worldwide generated profits of £111 million on sales of
About ITV plc
ITV plc is the UK's largest commercial broadcaster, with our family of channels
watched by more than 80% of the population every week.
ITV has the most successful commercial family of channels in the UK. ITV1 is the
UK's most popular channel in peak-time; ITV2 is the UK's biggest non-terrestrial
channel; ITV3 is the most popular non-terrestrial channel on Freeview; and ITV4
had the most successful digital channel launch to date. ITV also owns CiTV, the
leading commercial children's channel on Freeview, and Men & Motors.
About Channel 4
Placing a premium on 'innovation and experiment in the form and content' of its
programming, Channel 4 has been Britain's most cutting edge, controversial and
creative broadcaster of the last two decades.
Channel 4 was established by Act of Parliament in 1982 and came on air in
November of that year. It enjoys unique status as the world's only major public
service broadcaster funded entirely by its own commercial activities, including
advertising-funded digital TV channels E4, More4 and Film4.
Channel 4 commissions all its programmes from third parties and has played the
leading role in helping nurture and grow a vibrant community of independent
producers in the UK.
This information is provided by RNS
The company news service from the London Stock Exchange