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Viacom takes control of Italian kids’ net

Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN) has taken full ownership of an Italian free-to-air (FTA) kids’ network in a deal with local player De Agostini Editore.

Raffaele Annecchino

Super! is now entirely part of VIMN, although De Agostini will continue to provide original content to the network as part of the deal.

The two companies had previously operated the channel, which targets children aged four to 14 with a mix of local and international content, as a 50/50 joint venture.

Raffaele Annecchino, president and MD for Southern and Western Europe, the Middle East and Africa at VIMN, said: “I’m pleased to confirm this new achievement in our ongoing strategy to strengthen our presence in Italy, a market where we have a strong position on pay TV with our main brands and premium content, including Nickelodeon.”

Pierfrancesco Gherardi, MD of the digital division at De Agostini Editore, added: “The success of Super! has gone far beyond our expectations. Launched in 2012 in an overcrowded market, by 2018 the channel had gained a leading position in the kids Italian sector, which was achieved for a second year in 2019.

“Now we’re passing it to Viacom, who will further enhance the heritage of the brand Super!. We, as De Agostini, will focus our efforts on our channels distributed on pay TV, on our digital platforms as well as on content production and coproduction, which we have already successfully developed in these past few years.”

Viacom already owns and operates three FTA digital terrestrial channels in Italy – Paramount Network, Spike and VH1 – and also owns 11 branded channels including MTV, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon and Nick Jr, which are all distributed on Italy’s leading pay platform, Sky.

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