RNS Number : 4145Q
03 August 2010
3 August 2010
ITV MOVES INTO PAY TELEVISION
- ITV TO LAUNCH HIGH DEFINITION DIGITAL CHANNELS ON SKY -
ITV has agreed a pay-television deal with Sky to launch high definition versions of its successful digital channels as a subscription service on the Sky platform.
ITV2 HD, ITV3 HD, and ITV4 HD will launch as part of Sky+HD's subscription package of channels in autumn 2010. The channels will be available to all homes subscribing to a Sky+HD subscription, of which there are more than 2.9 million.
ITV2 HD will launch in October for the start of The Xtra Factor, with ITV3 HD and ITV4 HD launching shortly after.
ITV's digital channel family is the most successful in the UK, and increased its total share of viewing over the first half of 2010 by 12%, with ITV2 and ITV3 the two most popular digital channels in the UK.
Adam Crozier, Chief Executive of ITV plc, said: "I'm delighted to announce ITV's move into pay television today with this deal with Sky. We will launch our highly successful family of digital channels, ITV2, ITV3 and ITV4, in high definition for the very first time as part of the Sky+HD subscription.
"Building new revenue streams by exploiting our content across multiple platforms is a key part of the ITV Transformation Plan announced today. Pay television has seen continual growth over the last decade and this deal is a great example of how a new, subscription-based launch, can complement ITV's existing free-to-air channels."
Mike Darcey, Sky's Chief Operating Officer, said: "The subscription model best rewards those committing to HD and continues to drive its growth. We therefore welcome ITV's move to embrace pay TV to satisfy the demands of millions who now regard anything less than HD as a compromise. This is great news for the one in three Sky homes who have already responded to the increased choice and quality offered by Sky+HD."
The new high definition channels will showcase a large and increasing range of high definition programming. ITV2, original HD programming will include the top rating entertainment shows, Britain's Got More Talent, The Xtra Factor and I'm A Celebrity….Get Me Out of Here Now! ; original drama such as the third series of Secret Diary of a Call Girl; and acquired content including Vampire Diaries and Gossip Girl, and a range of top movies.
ITV3 will offer most of its catalogue of recent drama in high definition, including the likes of Lewis, Marple, Above Suspicion, and landmark factual series such as Joanna Lumley's Nile and Martin Clunes: Islands of Britain. An increasing amount of ITV3's classic drama will be broadcast in high definition as ITV re-masters its extensive back-catalogue. ITV4's high definition content will include premium sports events such as Tour de France and UEFA Europa League, as well as films.
As Europe's most comprehensive HD service, 2.9 million Sky+HD homes can currently access up to 43 HD channels spanning entertainment, sports, movies, arts, drama, kids and documentaries, including channel brands such as Sky Sports, Sky Movies, FX, Discovery, Channel 4, Sky Arts, MTV, Nat Geo, ESPN, Disney, the BBC and Sky1.
The Sky+HD box not only provides access to Europe's leading HD service and Sky's new HD electronic programme guide (EPG), but later this year it will also offer customers access to full broadband-enabled video-on-demand service and Sky 3D, Europe's first 3D TV channel, which launches to Sky homes on 1st October 2010.
For further information:
Louise Evans Director of Corporate Communications 07825 680994
James MacLeod Head of Press, Broadcasting 07801 628659
Stephen Gaynor Head of Communications, Commercial 020 7705 3446
This information is provided by RNS
The company news service from the London Stock Exchange