NEW YORK, Jan. 21, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Sky and CBS Corporation today announced a long-term licensing agreement for Sky Atlantic to be the exclusive home to SHOWTIME's growing portfolio of programming across all its territories in the UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria and Italy. Previously, Sky has licensed select SHOWTIME content from CBS on a program-by-program basis.
The deal will span all new and future series, including BILLIONS, which premiered in the U.S. with the best series debut performance ever for a SHOWTIME original series. Other new series include the return of TWIN PEAKS and new seasons of current hits such as RAY DONOVAN and THE AFFAIR. The agreement also means customers will have on-demand access to an acclaimed catalog of premium SHOWTIME programming including CALIFORNICATION, DEXTER and NURSE JACKIE.
The deal is the latest multi-territory agreement secured by Sky as it extends its market-leading offering across entertainment, sports, arts and movies. The exclusive relationship with SHOWTIME builds on Sky's position as the leading partner for U.S. content creators in Europe. Alongside an expanding portfolio of the best shows from the U.S. and around the world, Sky is also growing its investment in original production, which includes a successful partnership with SHOWTIME to co-produce the gothic horror series PENNY DREADFUL.
For CBS Corporation, this is the largest and most expansive international deal to date for SHOWTIME and the first time its content portfolio has been licensed to a single media company across multiple European territories. It also marks a significant next step in the company's global expansion strategy to distribute SHOWTIME's prestigious brand and broad programming slate as a bundled offering. Last year, CBS and Bell Media announced a similar exclusive agreement for SHOWTIME in Canada.
Beginning this year, Sky's 21 million customers will have exclusive access on Sky Atlantic to all future SHOWTIME series, such as BILLIONS, starring award-winning actors Paul Giamatti and Damian Lewis, and the return of TWIN PEAKS (in 2017). BILLIONS is a bold drama set in the ego-driven world of New York high finance. It was created, written and executive produced by Brian Koppelman and David Levien ("Ocean's Thirteen," "Rounders") and Andrew Ross Sorkin ("Too Big to Fail"). Following that will be the eagerly anticipated new series of the iconic TWIN PEAKS, widely considered one of the most groundbreaking programs ever. Director David Lynch and original co-creator Mark Frost continue the story 25 years after the quaint northwestern town of Twin Peaks was left stunned by the murder of homecoming queen Laura Palmer.
In addition to new drama and comedy series, customers will have on-demand access to the impressive SHOWTIME back catalog of hit shows. This will include the complete box sets of series, including THE BORGIAS, BROTHERHOOD, CALIFORNICATION, DEXTER, NURSE JACKIE and the original TWIN PEAKS. In addition to viewing their favourite shows when they want, customers can watch them where they want using Europe's biggest mobile TV service, Sky Go. Customers who use Sky's streaming platforms, NOW TV and Sky Online also have access to this must-see channel live and on-demand.
Alongside scripted content, Sky will have an exclusive option to take all new SHOWTIME distributed unscripted shows such as documentaries, late night and reality shows. Premiere dates for the programming may vary by country, and current rights agreements with other platforms will remain unchanged.
Gary Davey, Managing Director, Content, Sky commented: "This is one of the most important content deals Sky has ever agreed, cementing Sky's position as the market-leader in Europe for world-class drama. We are enormously proud that Sky will be the exclusive home to new SHOWTIME programs for many years to come, building on a relationship that has grown over time including producing three successful seasons of PENNY DREADFUL together. The agreement means our customers can enjoy an incredible slate of upcoming new dramas like BILLIONS, TWIN PEAKS and also explore hundreds of hours of amazing series such as DEXTER, CALIFORNICATION, THE AFFAIR and HOUSE OF LIES on-demand from the back catalog of one of the world's most exciting pay TV networks."
Armando Nuñez, President & CEO, CBS Global Distribution Group said: "This is the most significant international deal in the history of SHOWTIME, and further signals the value and prestige of its content brand in the global marketplace. SHOWTIME CEO David Nevins and his team have built an incredible roster of award-winning, critically acclaimed programming. This deal shows how robust and profitable SHOWTIME has become as a standalone product and revenue stream. We look forward to working with our outstanding partners at Sky to present SHOWTIME to its customers across Europe and on a wide range of their platforms."
Sky is Europe's leading entertainment company, serving 21 million customers across five countries: UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria and Italy. We offer the best and broadest range of content, deliver market-leading customer service and use innovative new technology to give customers a better TV experience, whenever and wherever they choose.
Sky has annual revenues of over £11 billion and is Europe's leading investor in television content with a combined programming budget of £4.9 billion. The group employs 30,000 people and is listed on the London Stock Exchange (SKY).
For more information visit www.sky.com/corporate
Showtime Networks Inc. (SNI), a wholly-owned subsidiary of CBS Corporation, owns and operates the premium television networks SHOWTIME®, THE MOVIE CHANNEL™ and FLIX®, and also offers SHOWTIME ON DEMAND®, THE MOVIE CHANNEL™ ON DEMAND and FLIX ON DEMAND®, and the network's authentication service SHOWTIME ANYTIME®. Showtime Digital Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of SNI, operates the stand-alone streaming service SHOWTIME®. SHOWTIME is currently available to subscribers via cable, DBS and telco providers, and as a stand-alone streaming service through Apple®, Roku®, Amazon and Google. Consumers can also subscribe to SHOWTIME via Hulu, Sony PlayStation® Vue and Amazon Prime Video. SNI also manages Smithsonian Networks™, a joint venture between SNI and the Smithsonian Institution, which offers Smithsonian Channel™ and Smithsonian Earth™, through SN Digital LLC. SNI markets and distributes sports and entertainment events for exhibition to subscribers on a pay-per-view basis through SHOWTIME PPV. For more information, go to www.SHO.com.
About CBS Studios International
CBS Studios International is the leading supplier of programming to the international television marketplace, licensing to more than 200 markets in more than 30 languages across multiple media platforms. The Studio participates in international channel ventures, currently comprised of 18 channels in 24 languages across over 100 territories, reaching more than 70 million households worldwide. CBS Studios International also exports a diverse lineup of formats for local production around the world. The division distributes content from CBS Television Studios, CBS Television Distribution, SHOWTIME®, CBS News, CBS Films and a library of more than 70,000 hours of programming. CBS Studios International is a division of CBS Corporation.
SOURCE CBS Corporation and Sky