German public broadcasters ARD and ZDF are planning to launch an advertising-supported online video-on-demand service that will make archive content available to viewers. However, the service is unlikely to launch before the end of the year, according to the broadcasters.
The pair have yet to decide on a final name for the service, currently dubbed Germany’s Gold, which will require regulatory approval. Germany’s Gold is also backed by Studio Hamburg, whose executive Antoine Schmidt-Roy is taking a leading role, and media entrepreneur Jochen Kroehne. Other partners involved in the project include Bavaria Fernsehproduktion, ZDF Enterprises, Beta Film, Ziegler Film, MME, Brainpool, Telepool and WDR Mediagroup.
A similar project developed by commercial broadcasters ProSiebenSat.1 and RTL was rejected by the regulatory authorities on the grounds that the pair already controlled a large part of the German advertising market. The commercial broadcasters have already criticised the public broadcasters’ plans for the new service.
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