Kermit taps Bruce G.M.

Henson/Hallmark channel to go full steam Oct. 1

MIAMI — Betsy Bruce has been named G.M. of the Kermit Channel, which soft-launched in Latin America and Asia on Monday.

Bruce was formerly prez of Time-Life Video & TV and prior to that held a senior post at cabler HBO.

The Kermit Channel, a joint venture between the Jim Henson Co. and Hallmark Entertainment, rolled out an initial, revolving three-hour sked and will ramp up to a full slate on Oct. 1.

The family-skewed net is finding early distribution via affiliates of Hallmark’s existing overseas web, the Hallmark Entertainment Network (HEN).

Kermit marketing VP Jodie McAffee said HEN’s Latino sub count is now a little over 3 million, and he expects Kermit Latino to be at the 2-million sub mark by Oct. 1.

Henson and Hallmark are meanwhile clearing rights for the launch of their planned U.S. joint venture, set to piggy-back on existing cabler the Odyssey Channel, which may later adopt the Kermit moniker.

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