ViacomCBS to now produce all Foxtel music channels

• In: MTV Classic, Club MTV & Nick Music Out: [V], Max & CMC

• Agreement expands Foxtel music channels with more music genres including a new kid friendly music channel

Foxtel has announced a landmark partnership which will see ViacomCBS Networks International (VCNI) provide a new line-up of music channels offering a wider range of music genres for Foxtel subscribers.

From 1 July 2020 the new look music line-up will cover every music style, rock and pop, contemporary and country, charts and dance, urban R&B, easy listening and the all-time classics.

The music channel collection will by spearheaded by MTV HITS, together with MTV Classic, Club MTV, CMT (Country Music Television) and the new Nick Music, a kid-safe and family-friendly music video channel for 4-15 year olds featuring chart-topping hits by the world’s most popular artists.

The move means Foxtel will no longer produce its own channels [V], Max and CMC (Country Music Channel). Channel [V] was one of the original subscription TV channels in Australia and was originally produced for Foxtel by XYZ Entertainment which was jointly owned by Foxtel and Austar. Some Foxtel staff will be impacted by the change with discussions underway about possible alternative employment.

The expanded portfolio will be owned and operated by VCNI with the MTV and CMT-branded channels all programmed in Australia for Australian audiences.

The new agreement with VCNI also includes renewal of the channels Nickelodeon, Nick Jr. and MTV on the Foxtel platform.

The deal could clear the way for Network 10 to offer a ViacomCBS music and/or kids channel as a multichannel addition for its free-to-air audience.

Foxtel chief commercial officer Amanda Laing said: “We are delighted to forge this new partnership with ViacomCBS which reaffirms Foxtel’s commitment to music television designed for Australian audiences.

“The agreement continues the refresh of Foxtel’s channel line-up and provides our customers with an even greater choice of music genres. ViacomCBS are global leaders in music television with a long-standing commitment to Australian music and we are pleased to continue building on our relationship with them with this historic new arrangement.”

ViacomCBS executive vice president, music & talent programming/events, Bruce Gillmer said: “Expanding ViacomCBS Networks International’s portfolio of music channels allows us to build even deeper relationships with Australian music fans, artists and labels. These branded channels resonate with music fans all over the world and launching in Australia gives us even more opportunity to bring audiences great music across genres.

“We’ve showcased incredible Australian artists from Gang of Youths to The Veronicas internationally. Launching these new music brands on Foxtel gives more Australian artists the opportunity to connect with fans locally and, potentially, around the world.”

Foxtel executive director of television Brian Walsh added: “Music remains as a strategically important part of the Foxtel content story and emphasises the depth and richness of our programming. These new channels will all be programmed by Australians, for Australians continuing our passion for local music curation.

We are proud of the heritage of our owned and operated music channels and the success they have enjoyed entertaining Foxtel customers for the past 25 years. I want to acknowledge the management and music teams, past and present, who created Channel [V], Max and CMC.

“Creating a great entertainment experience for our subscribers means constant renewal in every aspect of our business and our partnership with Viacom provides a fresh, new direction for music on Foxtel.”

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