Blue Ant Media has inked a pair of carriage deals that will see its wildlife channel Love Nature launch in Qatar and Nigeria.
The deals will see the company’s recently launched kids and global networks division expanding into the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) market for the first time, with Blue Ant appointing Chiara McKee (pictured) to lead the expansion as VP, EMEA, kids and global networks. She will join the company at MIPTV.
Based in the company’s London office, McKee will be charged with heading up Blue Ant’s distribution sales, operations and marketing in EMEA. McKee, who previously held the role of director, Love Nature International, will report to former Discovery and Fox exec Ward Platt, who was tapped to lead the division last September.
Under the carriage deals, Love Nature’s 4K channel has launched on Ooredoo TV’s linear service in Qatar and the English-language Nigerian TV provider MyTV. As well as in Canada, Blue Ant also operates the Love Nature linear channel in Singapore via StarHub, while the brand’s digital platform streams in more than 65 countries, including the U.K., where it launched on Amazon Channels UK in May 2017, Germany and Austria. The channel is a joint venture between Blue Ant and Smithsonian Networks.
In addition, Blue Ant is also expanding the footprint of its children’s nature linear channel ZooMoo, which is a joint venture with AT&T. The channel, aimed at two-to-seven year-olds, is also launching on the Nigerian linear network MyTV, which is a combination of Nigerian and international channels focusing on African content.
McKee’s remit will also expand to include oversight of the animated and live action YouTube gaming channel Arcade Cloud (1.3 million subscribers), which Blue Ant owns via its LA-based subsidiary Omnia Media. Blue Ant has been making significant moves in the kids space of late, following the launch of its animated production arm, Look Mom Productions, and the addition of kids content to its distribution slate.
Late last year, Blue Ant expanded the executive team for its Kids & Global Networks division with the appointments of Beatrice Lee and Carlyn Staudt, who have been tapped to oversee the division’s growth in the Asian market.