Bell Media goes for Gusto, eyes lifestyle channel launch

The purchase of rights to the Gusto TV brand in Canada will add a food and lifestyle channel to Bell Media's portfolio. (Pictured: Gusto's One World Kitchen)
May 4, 2016

Apparently Canada’s Bell Media was hungry to grow its specialty portfolio.

The broadcaster announced today it has acquired rights to the Gusto TV brand in Canada, and intends to launch a food-focused lifestyle channel in Canada later in 2016.

Until now, Food Network Canada has had a lock on the country’s mainstream food programming market. Bell Media’s new venture will include food programming as well as shows on fashion, travel and lifestyle. Programming will be in 4K and will include Canadian shows as well as global shows acquired by the company.

Bell Media also entered into a multi-year production deal with Gusto Worldwide Media to produce original Canadian shows. Those shows, which include A is for Apple, One World Kitchen (pictured) and Fish the Dish, will be produced in 4K, and Gusto Worldwide Media will retain all rights for markets outside Canada.

Gusto’s content has sold in 30 markets around the world and the company will maintain its growth objectives by continuing to sell content internationally and launching an international OTT service in 2017.

An indie fighting for oxygen in a big-media world, Gusto TV has tried a number of tactics to grow its exposure and reach among younger Canadians since it launched in 2013. Last year it executed Live Feed, a program developed in partnership with a fine-dining establishment in Ottawa, the Beckta Dining and Wine Bar kitchen, where it showed a six-hour-long, commercial-free, behind-the-scenes live telecast of chefs in the kitchen.

The channel has a largely female audience (78%) and 36.5% of its viewership is under the age of 40.

From Media in Canada

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.