A+E Networks® UK and Sky, as part of their successful 25-year joint venture, will launch the co-branded Sky HISTORY channel in Spring 2020.
A+E Networks UK channel HISTORY®, which will become Sky HISTORY, enjoyed a highly successful 2019, with audience share up by 11%. The foundation of this growth is the success of long-running franchises like Curse of Oak Island and new hit series such as UnXplained with William Shatner. There has also been greater investment in local commissions, including innovative talent-led UK programming; Damian Lewis: Spy Wars, James Nesbitt: Disasters That Changed Britain and Al Murray: Why Does Everyone Hate the English, which was awarded the Gamechanger Programme of the Year prize at the 2019 Broadcast Digital Awards.
Building on the success of 2019, Sky HISTORY, will have further investment in locally commissioned original programming in 2020 and beyond. The additional titles will showcase premium factual series and specials delivered by a range of UK production companies.
The channel will be available on linear TV and on demand in the UK and Ireland and will also be available on streaming service NOW TV for the first time.
Sky HISTORY is the flagship brand of the A+E Networks® UK family of channels: Crime+Investigation®, Sky HISTORY2 (formerly HISTORY2®), Lifetime® and free-to-air channel BLAZE®. All channels will continue to broadcast on Sky, Virgin Media, BT and TalkTalk.
Sky HISTORY will continue to be managed and operated by the A+E Networks® UK team from their Hammersmith offices.
“We are delighted to be deepening our partnership with Sky,” said Dean Possenniskie, Managing Director of A+E Networks® UK. “It is exciting to be taking the HISTORY® brand to a new level in the U.K. with greater commissioning investment and broader reach. Our joint venture with Sky has been a long-standing success—this innovative brand partnership further strengthens its future.”
Zai Bennett, Managing Director of Content at Sky, said: “The launch of Sky HISTORY will build on our existing channel portfolio and complement new channel brands Sky Documentaries and Sky Nature, which will also be coming in Spring 2020. The continuation of our strong partnership with A+E Networks® UK will mean more investment in premium original content and make it easier for our customers to find the shows they want to watch.”
About A+E Networks® UK
A+E Networks® UK, a joint venture between Hearst and Sky, is a leading media network reaching 58 million homes across 100 countries. With our portfolio of popular, high-performing and creative brands – HISTORY®, Crime+Investigation®, Lifetime®, HISTORY2® and UK free to air BLAZE® – we have entertained and inspired audiences for over 20 years; telling the stories that need to be told. Our award-winning factual and entertainment content includes global hit franchises like Forged in Fire and Born this Way, must see dramas Knightfall and Vikings as well as original local commissions including: Al Murray’s Why Does Everyone Hate the English and Murdertown with Katherine Kelly (UK), Married at First Sight (Africa) and The Hunt for Baltic Gold (Poland). We complement our programming with innovative talent-led exclusive digital content and top rated podcasts. We currently partner with over 360 operators broadcasting throughout the Nordics, Benelux, Central Europe, the Middle East and Africa. We have offices in London, Warsaw, and Johannesburg.
With 24 million customers across seven countries, Sky is Europe’s leading media and entertainment company and is proud to be part of the Comcast group. Our 32,000 employees help connect our customers to the very best entertainment, sports, news, arts and to our own local, original content. Following the success of Sky originals like Chernobyl, we plan to double our investment in original content by 2024. We’re also developing a new TV and movie studio, Sky Studios Elstree, which is expected to lead to the creation of over 2,000 new jobs and generate an additional £3 billion of production investment in UK creative sector in the first five years alone. Our technology allows customers to watch what they want, when they want, how they want, and as we connect millions of families to content they love, we believe it is our responsibility to do it safely. That’s why we offer services like Sky Broadband Buddy and the Sky Kids app. And our online streaming service, NOW TV, brings viewers all the enjoyment of Sky with the flexibility of a contract-free service. We also believe that a company of our scale has a responsibility that goes beyond our business, and into the community. We’re committed to being Europe’s first net zero carbon entertainment company by 2030 – two decades before we have to – and we’re an inclusive employer recognised by The Times and Stonewall for our commitment to diversity.
About NOW TV
NOW TV is a leading UK streaming service, giving you the best TV, box sets, movies, sports and kids entertainment, when, where and how you want to watch it. Pick from the range of content passes including Entertainment, Sky Cinema, Sky Sports, Kids and reality TV with hayu. You can stream content to watch through the NOW TV app, available on over 60 devices including the NOW TV Smart Stick and Smart Box with 4K. And even download your favourite shows and movies to watch on the go.
NOW TV is the home of the best new and original British comedies, Oscar, BAFTA, and Emmy award winning dramas, Sky originals and movies. As well as new premieres every day, NOW TV customers can enjoy over 40 new movies every month and Sky Atlantic shows, without a contract. Sports fans can enjoy live action across all 11 Sky Sports channels through day, week or month passes. NOW TV also offers customers great value reliable broadband as a standalone contract-free service with NOW Broadband.