Television

Sony Pictures Television acquires two Hungarian networks

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MUMBAI: Sony Pictures Television (SPT) Networks has agreed to acquire Modern Times Group’s (MTG) Hungarian free-TV operations comprising the channels Viasat3 and Viasat6 and the catch-up service Viasat Play.

The two channels focus on viewers aged 18-49.

The financial details of the deal were not disclosed. The main channel Viasat3 was launched in 2000, when MTG acquired a majority stake in the Budapest based TV-channel Alfa TV. Viasat6 was launched in 2008 and is skewed towards a younger and male oriented audience. Viasat Play was launched in 2010.

Both Viasat3 and Viasat6 are available on third party cable, DTH satellite and IPTV networks in Hungary. MTG’s pay-TV channels Viasat Explore, Viasat History and Viasat Nature, are not part of the agreement, and will continue to be available to viewers in Hungary through a variety of distributors.

“Our Hungarian channels were our first free-TV operations to be launched outside Scandinavia and the Baltics. We are proud of what has been achieved by the Hungarian team and are confident that the new owner will achieve further success with the business. We are focusing our European Free-TV Emerging Markets business on our scale and leading media houses in the Baltics, Bulgaria and the Czech Republic,” said MTG President and CEO Jorgen Madsen Lindemann.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approval by the Hungarian competition authority, and is expected to close during the second quarter of 2015.

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