SPT Networks, MTG to close Hungarian channel deal

Sony Pictures Television Networks is expected to finalize the acquisition of the Scandinavian television operator's Hungarian TV channels Viasat3 and Viasat6, as well as the Viasat Play VOD service, following regulatory approval.
October 27, 2015

Sony Pictures Television Networks (SPT) is expected to finalize the acquisition of Hungarian TV channels Viasat3 and Viasat6, as well as the Viasat Play VOD service, following regulatory approval from the Hungarian Competition Authority.

The agreement for the channels – owned by Scandinavian television operator MTG – will bolster SPT as the second largest cable and satellite provider in the country with a brand portfolio that already includes the AXN, AXN White and AXN Black linear channels, as well as the digital services AXN NOW and AXN Player.

Once closed, SPT Networks will boost content across the channels, delivering a combination of new series and popular classic programming.

Viasat3 will provide a strong focus on locally produced general entertainment content targeting women aged 18 to 39, while Viasat6 will look to corner the young male demographic through popular films, action and comedy series.

Both channels will continue to be carried by Hungary’s main cable and satellite operators.

The news follows MTG’s August announcement that it was to cut approximately 300 jobs across Sweden, Norway, Denmark and the UK as part of an effort to drive the company’s digital growth. The Scandinavian television operator also underwent a management realignment earlier this year in an effort to reflect fast-moving consumer trends.

“This acquisition is a cornerstone to increasing our foothold in the Central European market, and will provide countless benefits to our business partners and viewers,” said Lyle Stewart, senior VP of SPT Networks CEEMA, in a statement. “We are focused on further growing our business over the coming months, building on the considerable success our channels and digital services have already had.”

About The Author
Daniele Alcinii is a news editor at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joined the RS team in 2015 with experience in journalism following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and with communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.