NewFronts 2015: Discovery Taps YouTube Travel Vlogger Louis Cole, TLC Launches Digital-Video Site

Discovery Communications is bringing YouTube travel vlogger and adventurer Louis Cole’s popular FunForLouis channel to the company’s digital Seeker network, while the cabler’s TLC network touted its launch of an “inspirational” digital-video destination with real-life stories aimed at women.

The programmer announced the deals at Discovery’s Digital Content NewFronts presentation Tuesday in New York City.

Cole, a 32-year-old Brit who has more than 1.3 million subscribers on YouTube and 633,000-plus on Twitter, has established a following for his video dispatches of his adventures across the globe. In 2014, he traveled across six continents — on more than 100 flights — documenting his experiences including camel surfing in India and exploring bat tunnels in Vietnam.

FunForLouis will join the lineup of Seeker, Discovery Digital Network’s recently launched online travel network, to be available at Seekernetwork.com as well as on YouTube.

“Louis embodies the spirit of Seeker and our dedication to journeys and storytelling that celebrates the world around us and those who are never satisfied with the expected or mundane,” said Tom Lofthouse, SVP of programming at Discovery Digital Networks. “His charismatic personality and his passion for travel pull us into his beautiful, crazy, chaotic world, and we are thrilled to welcome him to the Seeker family.”

Cole’s new original series “Flying the Globe” (working title), to debut later in 2015, will feature him circumnavigating the globe in a small aircraft on a 60- to 90-day trip as he visits 22 cities. “Being a part of the online community and encouraging others to live their adventure is what FunforLouis is all about, and I can’t wait to see what this new partnership holds for the future,” Cole said.

In addition, Discovery’s TLC announced the launch of TLCme – an online destination with original series from contributors including Stacy London, host of TLC’s fashion-advice show “Love, Lust or Run.” The programmer has signed restaurant chain TGI Fridays as TLCme’s launch sponsor.

TLC is promising new content daily on TLCme, covering topics including family, home, beauty, style, health and food. The site is overseen by Courtney Reimer, editor-in-chief of TLCme, who has been EIC of TLC.com for the last three years. The new TLCme is focused on providing our visitors with a place to take a little ‘me time’ and catch up on trending topics and tips that help fuel their everyday lives and conversation,” she said.

The TLCme launch is timed for TLC’s “Mother of All Weeks” programming event that runs May 3-10, focusing on mom-themed topics ahead of Mother’s Day on Sunday.

Discovery held its NewFronts presentation at Urbo, an upscale eatery in Manhattan’s Times Square.

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