Discovery Communications is expanding further into the Middle East and North Africa markets with the planned acquisition of Takhayal Entertainment and its affiliated companies, including food network Fatafeat.
Takhayal Entertainment, which has offices in Cairo and Dubai, will be managed as part of Discovery’s Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa (CEEMEA) region, led by Kasia Kieli, president and managing director.
The finalization of the acquisition is expected to happen during the fourth quarter of this year, after regulatory approval and other customary closing conditions are completed.
Takhayal Entertainment is a television, publishing and media company with a distribution network in 14 countries around the region. Fatafeat is the top food network in the Middle East.
The acquisition gives Discovery Networks International access to a library of 700 hours of cooking shows and Fatafeat’s production facility. Fatafeat broadcasts to approximately 55 million television households in the Middle East and North Africa.
“The acquisition of Takhayal, the premier company for cuisine and culinary programming in the Middle East, significantly strengthens our portfolio in this important region and adds content in a genre that has proven popular with our viewers around the globe, including on Real Time in Italy and the UK and on TLC in Poland, Latin America and India,” said Mark Hollinger, CEO of Discovery Networks International.
Takhayal CEO Youssef El-Deeb added, “The core expertise of our team is its great creativity and dedication, and this combination has enabled us to achieve very clear brand positioning and stand out amongst the hundreds of Arab TV channels as the leading lifestyle brand across the Middle East.”
Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.