SRMG and Warner Bros Discovery have also committed to co-producing high-quality local programming to be distributed globally through the Discovery Global network.
Warner Bros. Discovery and Saudi Research and Media Group have signed a long-term partnership to launch Asharq Discovery, a new free-to-air (FTA) Arabic language channel, exclusively for audiences in the Middle East North Africa (MENA) region.
Asharq Discovery will be the newest addition to SRMG’s growing media and international offerings.
The partnership upholds Warner Bros. Discovery’s MENA expansion strategy and SRMG’s growth strategy, brought together by a shared goal of diversifying content and improving its accessibility, and to help propel MENA’s entertainment industry to become one of the largest globally.
Commenting on the partnership, Jamie Cooke, GM CEE, Middle East & Turkey, said: “The MENA’s entertainment industry has been undergoing an incredible transformation and exponential growth, posing great potential and offering immense opportunities for content players and consumers. Having established our Discovery brand in linear channels and successfully launching our non-fictional streaming service discovery+ last year, we believe launching a new FTA channel in MENA with the homegrown powerhouse, SRMG is a solid step for us to build a 360 ecosystem of entertainment. This partnership will also support our MENA business development strategy to increase our presence in KSA.”
Jomana Al Rashid, CEO of SRMG, added: “Our new strategic collaboration with Warner Bros Discovery will further bolster our ability to deliver dynamic, innovative, and exciting Arabic content, through new multiple formats and platforms. This partnership is a further demonstration of SRMG’s unrelenting focus and commitment to its consumer-centric approach; bringing our audiences engaging and premium content – when, where and how they want it. Discovery has an unrivalled legacy of producing cutting-edge, high-quality documentaries. We look forward to working together to deliver co-commissioned quality content, provide new job opportunities and best-in-class training, as well as tap into a new global network for our growing audiences.”
Asharq Discovery will offer audiences real-life entertainment with thousands of hours worth of premium content, including originals, premiers and exclusives, across a wide selection of genres spanning pop science and engineering, motoring and turbo, wildlife and nature, adventure and travel, reality and lifestyle, crime mystery documentaries. In addition, Warner Bros. Discovery and SRMG have earmarked co-productions of high-quality local programming, to be distributed globally through the Discovery Global network – thus adding more cultural and market relevance to the mix.
Asharq Discovery launch-related planning and necessary steps are currently underway, with the aim for it to be available to end-users in MENA, during 2023, through broadcast, streaming and third-party local apps, with a catch-up facility available on over-the-top (OTT) platforms.