RTL Nederland and Talpa to merge in major Dutch media fusion
RTL Nederland and Talpa Network plan to merge and form a joint venture, the two media companies announced on Tuesday. They will have a joint market share of around 40% of Dutch channels - larger than NPO's share of around 35.5 percent last year. The regulators still have to approve the deal, RTL Nieuws said.
RTL Nederland will receive 70 percent of the joint venture's shares and Talpa 30 percent. RTL CEO Sven Sauve will be the director. John de Mol will be a shareholder and producer of new formats. All channels will continue to exist side by side for the time being, the companies said.
Sauve called the merger a strategic move. "We want to make Videoland stronger. Competition in the field of streaming services is increasing. Fireplay and HBO are coming to the Netherlands and we suspect that more parties are standing ready. By working together with Talpa Network, we can invest in Dutch content and set ourselves apart."
De Mol is happy to merge and create a "company that can compete with international tech players" and eager to focus more on new programs and formats. "I founded Talpa Network to build a strong Dutch media company that can compete with the growing international platforms, preserving local content. This new step makes that possible. I am pleased that the deal creates a strong Dutch company that not only guarantees Dutch quality programming, but is able to compete with American and Chinese tech players."
RTL and Talpa expect that the deal will be complete in the first half of next year, pending approval from Brussels and the Dutch authority on consumers and markets ACM.
RTL Nederland was founded 26 years ago and employs around 800 people. Talpa Network was founded 16 years ago and has around 1,200 employees. Both companies also work with dozens of freelancers.