BBC notches up record sales at Mipcom 2002

CANNES: BBC Worldwide, the main commercial arm of the BBC, has concluded record programming deals at the ongoing Mipcom international television market in Cannes.

The company claims to have notched up more than 5 million worth of co-productions and programme licensing agreements in the first few days of the market. Overall business, as a result of its attendance at the market, is expected to generate more than 40 million for BBC Worldwide.

More than 1000 hours of programming, from across all genres, has been licensed to broadcasters around the world. Highlights to date include:

- The natural history series Wild New World has been licensed to WDR Germany, SVT Poland, VRT Belgium, TV Catalunya, Tele Madrid, TV Valencia and Euskal Telebista in Spain, and YLE Finland.

- The Life of Mammals, David Attenborough's new 10-part series, has been licensed to YLE Finland, SVT Sweden, VRT Belgium, ORT Russia, M-NET South Africa and ABC Australia.

- The ABC has taken Walking with Cavemen, along with France 2, VRT Belgium, SVT Sweden and CBC Canada, while Sahara, Michael Palin's latest globe trotting adventure, has been pre-sold to 11 broadcasters including TVNZ New Zealand, ABC Australia, YLE Finland, VRT Belgium and NRK Norway.

- Crime and Punishment, Spooks, Mersey Beat, Tweenies and the new teen actioner Ace Lightning have also been licensed to VRT Belgium, whilst the BBC's racy new period drama, Tipping the Velvet will be broadcast by CBC Canada and the BBC's hit comedy series The Office (series 2) by TPS Cinma in France.

- Ace Lightning has also been licensed to German terrestrial channel ZDF, HMG Netherlands and TVB Hong Kong.

- In Australia BBC Worldwide Asia Pacific has signed an agreement with ABC TV to broadcast Fimbles, the latest addition to the BBC Worldwide Children's programming line-up, on ABC Kids in 2003.

- BBC Worldwide also signed a record nine co-production agreements with broadcasters in Germany, significantly refocusing the company's business in the market.

- Public broadcaster NDR has signed co-production agreements for the new history documentary Pyramid and the three-part series Monsters We Met. ZDF will co-produce Human Hunter and The Race for Everest. (Monsters We Met and Pyramid are BBC/Discovery Channel/NDR Germany co-productions).

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