AXN TV expands presence in Europe

LONDON: Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) has announced the continued expansion of its global cable and satellite networks portfolio.

Next month, the action-oriented AXN TV will launch in six European countries -- Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania and Bulgaria.


Tom Davidson

SPE executive Tom Davidson is the new network's general manager. He will be based in Budapest.

An official release informs that AXN now reaches over 86 million households in over 40 countries throughout Asia, Europe and Latin America. In Europe, AXN is currently available in Spain and Portugal.

AXN's programme offering includes a wide selection of hit European and US series, blockbuster feature films and exclusive franchise properties. In India the channel is trying to connect with viewers through localised ground initiatives. The latest one Extreme Dhamaka will kick off shortly.

Launched as a customised subscriber and ad-supported basic channel, AXN will deliver localised content to the Hungarian, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Romanian and Bulgarian markets. With each country to eventually join the expanded European Union, AXN is well-positioned for rapid growth in the region, the release informs.

In Portugal, a recent Cabovis?o subscriber survey confirmed that AXN was the most-watched general entertainment channel on the platform and ranks in the top five most popular channels available. It was surpassed only by free-to-air terrestrial Portuguese channels.

In Spain, a recent audience report issued by Sofres ranks AXN as number one in prime time among cable and satellite subscribers.

SPE's senior vice president international networks Darren Childs says, "AXN consistently delivers the demographic that MSOs need to drive their distribution, and that advertisers covet. Establishing channels in these six new territories is a key part of our strategy to extend the reach of AXN throughout Europe."

Childs says, Davidson is a very talented media executive who brings proven channel management experience together with exceptional industry knowledge of these countries.

Davidson will oversee the channel's overall business operations in the above mentioned European regions, including day-to-day management of programming, acquisitions, sales, marketing, promotion, branding and technical operations.

Davidson joined SPE in 2000 and more recently served as executive director of finance. Prior to joining SPE, Davidson played an integral role in the launch of HBO Romania, the country's first premium TV channel, where he served as chief financial officer adds the release.

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