Charter, Viacom Team For Content, Ads In New Accord

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Spectrum and Spongebob are getting a little closer: Viacom and Charter Communications have inked a multi-year renewal and expansion of their distribution relationship.


The new deal also calls for the co-production of original content, and collaboration around advanced advertising.

In a Wednesday morning announcement, the companies revealed that Viacom’s Nickelodeon, BET, MTV, Comedy Central, Spike (set to become Paramount Network in 2018), VH1, TV Land and CMT will appear on the “Spectrum Select” tier across its systems.

Additional undisclosed Viacom networks will continue to be available on Spectrum Silver and Spectrum Gold tiers.

But the bigger takeaway is the companies’ newly forged partnership for “new original content that will exclusively premiere for subscribers on Charter’s platform in the U.S.”

Under the agreement, Viacom’s Paramount Television and Charter will jointly produce the programming. Viacom will distribute the co-produced programming internationally, as well as in additional domestic markets, including potentially on Viacom Networks, after Charter’s premiere period. This could bring the content, or adaptations, to Viacom’s Channel 5 in Great Britain, its recently acquired Telefe in Argentina, and India’s Colors.

Additionally, the companies have agreed to collaborate on the use of anonymized viewership data, on advanced advertising opportunities, and on addressing unauthorized password sharing.

Other terms of the agreements were not disclosed.

The new accord comes following a potentially devastating retransmission agreement tussle turned into a truce in mid-October.


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Adam R Jacobson is a veteran radio industry journalist and advertising industry analyst with general, multicultural and Hispanic market expertise. From 1996 to 2006 he served as an editor at Radio & Records.

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