Viacom closes £450m Channel 5 takeover and unveils new shows

 
Oliver Smith
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Channel 5 has the rights to screen highlights of the Ashes cricket series
MTV-OWNER Viacom has completed its £450m takeover of Channel 5, ending the auction process of the UK broadcaster which began last year.

Viacom also announced its first joint programme commissions with Channel 5, a reality TV show called 10,000 BC, as the US group looks to boost the British channel’s programming budget and benefit from the synergies in joint commissioning.

“Our ownership of Channel 5 will significantly increase Viacom’s investment in British creativity and content,” said Viacom chief executive Philippe Dauman.

Viacom also confirmed that Channel 5’s £350m TV ad sales arm would remain as a standalone business, knocking back both BSkyB and Channel 4 which were reportedly angling to pick up the contract.

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