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Christie sells two to Discovery

Julie Christie follows the trend set by SPP, selling The Living Channel and Food TV to Discovery Communications. The sale doubles the amount of Discovery in NZ, with Discovery Channel and Animal Planet already airing here.

All four channels screen on Sky as part of the broadcaster’s basic package.

Christie last year became a board member of the company that bought up the in-receivership MediaWorks. In that role Christie currently has to address the need to replace CEO Sussan Turner, whose resignation was announced yesterday.

From the media release:

Julie Christie

Christie won the Best Director gong at the 2012 Television Awards
Image: Sandra Mu/Getty Images AsiaPac

“Discovery has a proven track record of producing and investing in original factual and lifestyle programming that resonates globally,” said Mandy Pattinson, executive VP and general manager for Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands at Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific. “Working closely with our partners at SKY TV, the acquisition of The Living Channel and Food TV will provide us with a great opportunity to continue offering viewers the programs they know and love, as well as original lifestyle and food programming never before seen by New Zealand audiences. We look forward to continuing to work alongside SKY TV on local New Zealand productions to ensure the channels remain uniquely Kiwi.”

John Fellet, the CEO of SKY TV, added, “The SKY team would firstly like to thank and congratulate Julie Christie on her creation of two popular niche channels that have found a loyal audience on SKY. With The Living Channel and Food TV becoming part of the Discovery Networks stable I know they will continue to offer great viewing with plenty of local shows that our New Zealand audience really enjoys.”

Julie Christie, the founder of TLCNZ, said: “Television is a global business and we are pleased to hand over the reins to a global player like Discovery whose knowledge and access to content will ensure the channels can remain at the forefront of lifestyle television. Their commitment to keeping the channels ‘local’ ensures our viewers will still enjoy the content they love. We thank John Fellet and the team at SKY TV for a great partnership over the past 12 years and I personally look forward to working with Discovery on enhancing the channels in the near future.”

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