RTL Group and John de Mol Agree on Asset Deal in the Netherlands
Radio Station 538 to be integrated – TV assets transferred – John de Mol becomes shareholder of RTL Nederland
Luxembourg/Hilversum, 26 June 2007 – RTL Group and John de Mol’s Talpa Media Holding today announced that they have signed an asset deal in the Netherlands. The country’s leading radio station Radio 538 will be integrated in the country’s leading TV group, RTL Nederland, which will also acquire TV assets from Talpa Media, such as sports rights and successful Dutch shows and drama series. Talpa Media will receive a 26.3 percent stake in RTL Nederland.
In addition, RTL Nederland will obtain a first look in the Netherlands of all formats developed by John de Mol’s Creative Unit in the context of a volume deal. RTL Nederland will share in the worldwide profits of the formats that have been shown on one of RTL’s Dutch TV stations. The agreement has been signed by Gerhard Zeiler, Chief Executive Officer of RTL Group, John de Mol, majority shareholder of Talpa Media Holding and Fons van Westerloo, Chief Executive Officer of RTL Nederland.
Gerhard Zeiler, Chief Executive Officer of RTL Group, said: “Under the leadership of Fons van Westerloo our profit centre in the Netherlands has made fantastic progress since 2003. With this transaction, we not only partner with John de Mol, an outstanding entrepreneur and one of the most creative minds in our business. RTL Nederland will become a fully integrated audiovisual company, combining RTL’s complementary family of TV channels and the country’s leading radio station.”
John de Mol’s view on the deal: “This is a great day for Talpa Media. The connection to the RTL network in the Netherlands opens up the opportunity for Talpa to develop creative content for several platforms in this country and to exploit the content for the international market.”
Fons van Westerloo, Chief Executive Officer of RTL Nederland said about the partnership: “We started negotiations with Talpa in December and have reached an excellent agreement. A radio station with the target group and the reach of Radio 538, perfectly fits in with the existing activities of RTL Nederland. We also preserve the successful programmes of Talpa Media. We are proud that a man of John de Mol’s stature is joining our ranks as an important shareholder.”
For the time being, the television channel Tien will continue broadcasting in its current form. The deal is subject to approval of the RTL Group Board of Directors. Also, the agreement will be presented for approval to the Netherlands Competition Authorities (NMa).
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About RTL Group
RTL Group is the leading European entertainment network, with interests in 38 television channels and 29 radio stations in ten countries and content production throughout the world. The television portfolio of Europe’s largest broadcaster includes RTL Television in Germany, M6 in France, Five in the UK, the RTL channels in the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Croatia and Hungary, Ren TV in Russia and Antena 3 in Spain. RTL Group’s flagship radio station is RTL in France, and it also owns or has interests in other stations in France, Germany, Belgium, Spain and Luxembourg. RTL Group's content production arm, FremantleMedia is one of the largest international producers outside the US. Each year, it produces more than 10,000 hours of programming in 22 countries.