RTL Group acquires a 30.0 per cent shareholding in the Russian television network REN TV
Luxembourg, 1 July 2005 - RTL Group, Europe’s leading broadcaster and content provider, today announces that it has agreed with the founders of REN TV, Iren Lesnevskaya and Dmitry Lesnevsky, to acquire a 30 per cent shareholding in the Russian television and production group. The transaction is subject to regulatory and corporate approvals and is expected to be finalised before the end of the year. Iren Lesnevskaya and Dmitry Lesnevsky will continue to be closely associated with RTL Group.
Iren Lesnevskaya said “We started out in 1991 with a small production company and are very proud of what we have achieved since then. Bringing RTL Group into REN TV ensures access to technical and management knowledge and expertise. REN TV will thus be able to develop even faster over the next years. I am excited that my son, Dmitry, and I will continue to work with RTL Group”.
Thomas Rabe, CFO of RTL Group says: “We have worked with Iren and Dmitry for more than 15 months to make this happen. We are looking forward to working with the REN TV staff to grow the business and to fully exploit its potential.”
Gerhard Zeiler, CEO of RTL Group, comments: “I am delighted that we have been able to expand RTL Group into Russia, one of the fastest growing advertising markets in the world. Today’s announcement demonstrates our commitment to further strengthen our position as the only truly pan European broadcaster and is in line with our expressed desire to expand our business in Eastern Europe.”
For further information:
Senior Vice President
External Communications and Investor Relations
Phone: 00352/2486 5075 or 5130
About RTL Group
RTL Group is Europe's leading commercial broadcaster, with interests in 31 television channels and 33 radio stations in ten countries and content production throughout the world. Its television portfolio includes RTL Television in Germany, M6 in France, five in the UK, and the RTL channels in the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Croatia and Hungary, as well as Antena 3 in Spain and TVI in Portugal. RTL Group’s flagship radio station is RTL in France, and it also owns or has interests in other stations in France, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal and Luxembourg. RTL Group's content production arm, FremantleMedia is one of the largest international producers outside the US. It is currently producing more than 260 programmes in over 40 countries including the USA, providing a wide range of drama, entertainment and factual programming for viewers around the world.
About REN TV
The REN TV production company has been producing shows for the Russian channels since 1991. On the back of the successes enjoyed by the production company, REN TV was launched with broadcasting activities beginning on 1 January 1997. Today, REN TV is the one of Russia’s leading private broadcasters. The Moscow based television network reaches 97 million citizens with a technical coverage of approximately 87 per cent. REN TV operates through a broadcast network holding licences in Moscow, Chelyabinsk, Magnitogorsk, and Volgograd and through subsidiaries in Ekaterinburg, Voronezh, Bryansk and Rostov-on-Don and has more than 180 broadcasting agreements with local operators. The REN TV signal is received in all 18 Russian cities with more than 1 million inhabitants and in all 29 cities included in the TNS Gallup peoplemeter panel.
REN TV’s program grid includes news, documentaries, entertainment, music and sports programs as well as popular foreign series and movies.