Euro deals accent E!

Channel pacts with Kabel Deutschland, Cablecom

HOLLYWOOD — E! has reached a milestone in its expansion strategy with the signing of its first ever long-term channel deals for its E! International Network in Germany and Switzerland.

The round-the-clock entertainment nicher will be a featured channel on Germany’s Kabel Deutschland and Switzerland’s Cablecom, the largest operators in their respective countries.

The deal was unveiled Wednesday by E! senior VP Kevin MacLellan.

“These first deals in Germany and Switzerland represent an important benchmark in our global strategy, and mark the next phase of our E! Intl. Network rollout with localized versions into the non-English speaking territories of Western Europe,” MacLellan said.

He added that the L.A.-based company would be working this year to get the channel more widely distributed in the rest of the continent.

E! Intl. Net will be one of the first channel offerings available on Kabel Deutschland’s digital basic tier. Cablecom will include E! as part of its new extended basic digital offering called Family Package.

E! will begin broadcasting the German language feed in May.

The German deal was negotiated by E! regional director Brad Wald and by Manuel Cubero, VP Digital TV at Kabel Deutschland.

Additionally, the E! Intl. Net will be part of a basic digital tier in Cyprus via that island’s government-run Cyprus Telecommunications Authority.

Programmed specifically for international audiences, E! Intl. Net is available in 23 countries, including the U.K., New Zealand, the Netherlands and Indonesia.

Kabel Deutschland (KDG) operates in 13 of Germany’s federal states, supplying 10 million TV households in that territory. In 2003, an investment consortium made up of Apax Partners, Providence Equity and Goldman Sachs Capital Partners took over Kabel Deutschland from Deutsche Telekom.

Cablecom supplies 1.5 million households, making it the leading cable network provider in Switzerland.

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