Discovery Italia, the Italian unit of US media company Discovery Communications, has purchased a 100 per cent shareholding in Switchover Media, an Italy-based TV channel producer.
Rome-based Switchover Media operates a total of four free-to-air channels – two aimed at an adult audience (Giallo and Focus) and two for kids (K2 and Frisbee), as well as one pay-TV channel (GXT). The channels are available on digital terrestrial and digital satellite.
As a result of this operation, Discovery Italia becomes the third biggest media group on the local TV market in terms of overall share. It now manages a total of six free-to-air (including Real Time and DMax) and six pay-TV channels (including Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, Discovery Travel & Living, Discovery Science and Discovery World).
The new structure will respond to Marinella Soldi, CEO of Discovery Italia and General Manager Southern Europe, based in Milan. The founder and former majority shareholder of Switchover Media, Francesco Nespega, will work with Discovery throughout the transition.