NBCU Launching Free-to-Air Network in New Zealand


SYDNEY: NBCUniversal International Networks and MediaWorks have entered into a joint venture that will see the channel FOUR transform into the entertainment-lifestyle brand Bravo, which will be a free-to-air network in New Zealand.

The network has already made its first original commission, The Real Housewives of Auckland. NBCUniversal International Studios’ production company Matchbox Pictures has already starting casting for the New Zealand housewives. The series will premiere in August 2016, exclusive to Bravo.

The channel is expected to launch in July. It will feature unscripted programming centered on themes of glam, design, food and pop culture. The lineup will include Million Dollar Listing (New York and Los Angeles), Top Chef (Duels, Masters, Just Desserts and All Stars) and The Real Housewives. In addition, popular series Vanderpump Rules, Flipping Out, Southern Charm, Shahs of Sunset and Made in Chelsea will join the programming lineup. New series premieres in 2016 include Tour Group, Below Deck: Mediterranean, Après Ski, The Real Housewives of Potomac and The Real Housewives of Dallas.

Bravo New Zealand will be headquartered at MediaWorks’ Auckland offices.

“The Asia Pacific is an important growth region for NBCUniversal International and we are extremely pleased to have the opportunity to invest further in New Zealand,” commented Belinda Menendez, the president of NBCUniversal International Distribution & Networks. “Having enjoyed a long-standing, strong relationship with MediaWorks, we are excited to expand our relationship in order to bring Bravo—a premier free-to-air entertainment-lifestyle channel—to the market.”

“We are delighted to introduce one of the most popular TV brands in the U.S. to New Zealand —and we look forward to partnering with Mark and the MediaWorks team to bring this exciting channel to life,” commented Chris Taylor, the managing director for New Zealand and Australia at NBCUniversal International Distribution & Networks. “With programming that inspires, informs and entertains, Bravo is a brand that we know will resonate well with New Zealanders—both viewers and advertisers, alike.”