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RTL nests in pay niche

Teuton web prepping three channels

COLOGNE — RTL TV has announced plans to enter pay TV with a selection of niche channels to launch this fall.

Germany’s largest commercial web is preparing three channels, two for fiction fare such as series and movies and one for coaching and lifestyle shows, an RTL spokesman told Daily Variety. “As we are transferring to the digital era with free TV, we are planning to introduce additional services,” he said.

The niche nets are projected to be ready to launch this fall, with parallel introduction of video-on-demand. RTL is thus following the ProSiebenSat 1 group, which in June will start one comedy and one movie classics weblet.

The new niche channels will be available for subscribers via cable carriers Kabel Deutschland and Unity.

Besides its regular free TV, RTL has started offering extra services via Internet and mobile phone, the spokesman said.

Meanwhile, the broadcaster just failed to take a further step into Eastern Europe. According to local reports, RTL was not successful in its efforts to obtain a license for Serbia tendered last week.

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