Luxembourg (dpa-AFX) – The RTL Group (RTL) wants to merge its media business with John de Mol’s Talpa Network media company in the Netherlands. This would make them a stronger competitor to the country’s international streaming giants. The RTL Group announced plans to consolidate the media business on Tuesday evening. The deal is expected to close in the first half of 2022. The competition authorities have not yet approved the deal.
RTL wants to follow a similar path as in France. The M6 and TF1 private broadcasting groups are to be merged there. RTL Group owns shares in M6.
The plan in the Netherlands looks like this: Talpa Network will bring in its TV, radio, print, digital, e-commerce and other assets. In return, Talpa will receive 30% of the shares of the expanded RTL Nederland. It said the RTL Group would remain the majority shareholder in RTL Nederland and would then own 70 per cent of the combined group. The group would have generated sales of €909 million and operating profit of €84 million in 2020.
An important role will be played by the Dutch RTL’s live streaming service, Videoland, which has 1 million paying subscribers. The streaming service will be expanded further, and the advertising business is also part of the strategy.
Talpa Network’s content production units are not part of the deal. At the same time, they reached an agreement with RTL Nederland on the development of new formats for linear TV channels and a broadcast service, it was said.
According to the press release, the head of the RTL group, Thomas Rabe, said the merger to form a new cross-media group is the second big step after France to “strengthen our broadcasting business in Europe”.
According to the press release, Talpa Network owner John de Mol said, “I have built Talpa Network to build a strong Dutch media company able to compete with growing global platforms for local content. This step” will allow us to do just that and I am glad the deal will create A strong Dutch company that not only guarantees high-quality Dutch content but can also compete with American and Chinese technology companies.” He himself wants to focus again on creating and developing new and innovative content. Talpa includes TV stations SBS6, Net5 and Veronica as well as radio station Radio 538. /rin/ngu/DP/he
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