BBC Worldwide Sends Trio of Channels to Africa


LONDON: BBC Worldwide is launching BBC Brit, BBC Earth and BBC First in South Africa, with that country being the first to offer all three of the company's new global brands.

BBC Brit and BBC Earth will launch on MultiChoice's DStv platform in South Africa on September 1, and BBC First will follow on October 18. BBC Brit will be offered to DStv Premium, Extra and Compact customers, while BBC Earth and BBC First will be available exclusively to DStv Premium customers. BBC Brit and BBC Earth are replacing BBC Entertainment and BBC Knowledge in South Africa, with BBC First launching as a new brand. These channels will join BBC Lifestyle, CBeebies and BBC World News.

New and exclusive titles for South Africa on BBC Brit include Youngers, The Moaning of Life, Duck Quacks Don't Echo and Life Is Toff. BBC Earth will feature David Attenborough Meets President Obama, Life Story, Human Universe and Life Below Zero. The programming lineup for BBC First will include Wolf Hall, Peaky Blinders, The Missing and Doctor Who.

BBC Brit and BBC Earth debuted in Poland, the Nordics, Hungary, Romania and Turkey earlier this year. BBC First premiered in Australia in mid-2014 and in Belgium and the Netherlands this year. BBC Earth is slated to launch in Latin America on September 1 and in Asia on October 3.

Paul Dempsey, the president of global markets at BBC Worldwide, commented: "BBC Brit, BBC Earth and BBC First bring together some of the world's biggest names and best program-makers in three brilliantly curated, high-quality channel brands. The channels capture what's special about British TV and our South African launch marks an important step in the company's global strategy as we continue to inspire audiences with distinctive, premium programming."

Joel Churcher, the general manager and VP for Africa at BBC Worldwide, noted: "South Africa is the first market in the world to receive all three new brands. The content hosted on these channels is designed to reach a diverse pan-African audience, reflecting a wide range of voices, ages and cultures. Our African viewers clearly have a deep affection for BBC programming, and as a leading content distributor, we will continue to deliver high-quality, premium content to our channels for many years to come."

Mark Rayner, the COO for MultiChoice South Africa, added: "Our DStv customers will be delighted with the addition of even more compelling BBC content. We're constantly looking for ways to bring more value and premium entertainment to our customers—by being the first platform in the world to exclusively offer these three channels, just shows our level of commitment to that promise."