New German channel says Yep! to kids block

A new ProSiebenSat.1 male-skewing channel that’s launching this year has secured a long-term children’s content output deal with new m4e and Mainstream Media co-venture Yep! TV Bebtriebs.

From September 3, ProSieben MAXX will broadcast on German free-TV, targeted at a 30-59 male audience with US series, international documentaries and an in-house magazine series.

The channel will launch with the free-TV premiere of Captain America – the First Avenger on at 8.15pm.

It will also include a Yep! block, targeted at boys aged 6-13, following a deal with the German content provider. The block will comprise English-language premium titles and FTA premieres dubbed in German. MAXX’s kids series will include manga titles Pokemon and One Piece.

Yep!, which launched in October last year as JV between German kids TV producer-distributor m4e and channel operator Mainstream Media, will provide content through programming blocks, one on weekdays at 6am-10am, another 2pm-6pm and weekend 6am-11am and 2pm-6pm.

Former Viacom and Disney channel controller Karola Bayr runs Ismaning-based Yep!.

The news is set to backdrop of a changing kids FTA scene in Germany, with Disney Channel set to launch in January 2014 and market leader Super RTL securing a major content agreement with DreamWorks Animation earlier this summer.

m4e has been seeking to launch in free-TV to better monetise its extensive back catalogue since last year.

“Through this participation, m4e and Mainstream Media are expanding their business areas and their TV know-how into advertising-financed free-TV and to an extremely interesting target group,” said company CEO Hans-Ulrich Stoef. We are very pleased to be able to make this strategically important step together with a significant partner, ProSiebenSat.1, and we are convinced that we shall collectively turn the Yep! brand into a great success story in children’s entertainment.”

René Carl, ProSieben MAXX’s head, added: “Through this cooperation with Yep! we have acquired outstanding content for the daytime [schedule] on ProSieben MAXX. During the evenings, ProSieben MAXX offers television programming for men in the thirty-plus age group. In the daytime, when TV-utilisation of [that target group] is low, we shall be taking care of our younger generation.”

ProSiebenSat.1 launched a MAXX-branded channel in Norway, where it is known as MAX, though this was part of the SBS Nordic channel bouquet that Discovery Communications acquired for US$1.7 billion.

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