March 31, 2009
ROBUST GROWTH FOR THE MGM CHANNEL IN CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE CONTINUES WITH LAUNCH IN SLOVENIA
Phil Mordecai Named General Manager of MGM Channel Joint Venture with LGI Ventures in Central and Eastern Europe
The MGM Channel Now Covers All of Central and Eastern Europe
LOS ANGELES March 31, 2009 - MGM Networks, a division of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc., announced today that it has officially launched a locally versioned channel into Slovenia. With wide carriage on UPC, the country's largest cable operator, The MGM Channel's Slovenian launch scores another milestone for MGM Networks - delivering on its goal of operating branded channels in all of Central and Eastern Europe's multichannel markets.
The announcement was made today by Bruce Tuchman, President of MGM Networks, at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.
Underscoring the success and importance of The MGM Channel's distribution process, the board of The MGM Channel Central and Eastern Europe (MGM CEE), owned 50/50 by MGM Networks and LGI Ventures (an investment business of Liberty Global, Inc.), has announced that Phil Mordecai will assume the post of General Manager of MGM CEE effective next month. He will operate out of MGM CEE's headquarters in Munich, traveling frequently across the region. Mr. Mordecai, who previously served as Director of Affiliate Sales for Chello Zone Central and Eastern Europe (a Liberty Global company), has led MGM CEE's distribution efforts in the region as its distribution agent.
"MGM Networks continues to grow rapidly and expand the footprint of its many channels worldwide," said Mr. Tuchman. "We are extremely pleased to welcome Phil on board to lead our Central and Eastern European joint venture, and we are also excited to see our progress outside of the region and around the world match the great accomplishments that our CEE business has achieved."
Prior to his work at Chello Zone, Mr. Mordecai served in various capacities at SES Global and BSkyB. Commenting on his new post, Mr. Mordecai said: "I am thrilled to be taking on this great new responsibility and incredible opportunity. Having worked closely with The MGM Channel over the last few years as Director of Affiliate Sales at Chello Zone, I have been leading MGM CEE's distribution efforts in Hungary, Romania, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Slovenia. I have developed a great passion for the brand, the incomparable MGM film library and the tremendous opportunities for growth in the region across all platforms, including exploring HD and other new digital technologies emerging across the markets."
Commenting on the appointment, Chris Smith, Managing Director of LGI Ventures added: "We have been very impressed by Phil's contribution to MGM CEE's development during his time at Chello Zone, and are delighted that he has agreed to come on board."
Mr. Mordecai will assume his new post from Klaus Michler, who helmed the joint venture from its early stages and worked closely with the partners to build a thriving business across the region.
The MGM Channel's launch into Slovenia is a key event in the company's rapid expansion into Central and Eastern Europe. Starting with the launch in late 2004 of a 100%-owned Russian language service on Russia's leading DTH platform, NTV Plus, MGM branded channels have launched throughout the region including debuts in 2006 of locally versioned channels now reaching several million subscribers across Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Romania (through MGM CEE), as well as a High Definition version of the MGM Channel in Poland through a partnership with leading Polish media company, ITI. These developments were followed with the launch of a 100% MGM-owned local language MGM Channel in Bulgaria in 2007, and recent channel launches in Albania and the former Yugoslavia, including a Serb language version of its programming service.
With channels throughout Central and Eastern Europe, as well as all of the former Yugoslav Republics and the European states of the former USSR, The MGM Channel now broadcasts in eight languages, reaching millions in Russia, Poland, Hungary, Romania, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Moldova, Albania, Belarus and the former Yugoslavia. MGM Channels across the region are customized, film driven channels featuring the MGM brand and hand-picked selections from the MGM movie library, the world's largest collection of modern films. Along with these markets, MGM Channels are also available to tens of millions of homes across more than 125 countries it currently serves around the globe.
About MGM Networks
MGM Networks manages Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.'s interests in MGM-branded networks, Hollywood film studio joint venture channels and other programming services spanning scores of markets across Europe, North and South America, Asia, Oceana and Africa. For more information, visit www.mgmchannel.com.
About Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc.
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc., through its operating subsidiaries is actively engaged in the worldwide production and distribution of motion pictures, television programming, home video, interactive media, music, and licensed merchandise. The company owns the world's largest library of modern films, comprising around 4,100 titles. Operating units including Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc., Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Inc., United Artists Films Inc., Ventanazul, MGM Television Entertainment Inc., MGM Networks Inc., MGM Distribution Co., MGM International Television Distribution Inc., Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Home Entertainment LLC, MGM ON STAGE, MGM Music, MGM Consumer Products and MGM Interactive. In addition, MGM has ownership interests in international TV channels reaching over 125 countries and territories around the world. MGM ownership is currently as follows: Providence Equity Partners (29%), Texas Pacific Group (21%), Sony Corporation of America (20%), Comcast (20%), DLJ Merchant Banking Partners (7%) and Quadrangle Group (3%).
For more information, visit www.mgm.com.
About LGI Ventures
LGI Ventures, a business of international cable operator Liberty Global's content division Chellomedia, is a global investment fund that focuses on making minority investments in high growth companies with a focus on Content, Emerging Market Distribution and Technology. LGI Ventures actively leverages operating resources from the Liberty Global group of companies through all aspects of the investment life cycle. The fund is managed by a dedicated team of professionals located in Denver, London, and Sydney.