MTV Spain Goes Free To Air

MTV Spain celebrates its 10th anniversary tomorrow (Sept. 16) by going free to air on digital terrestrial television (DTT) at 9pm. At the Madrid presentation today (Sept. 15), Rafael Annechino, the director general of MTV Iberia, told the aim was to increase from the current 300,000 audience via pay TV to between 1.5 and 2 million viewers within a year, with the corresponding increase in advertising.

Only two other European MTV markets have open broadcasts: Italy and Greece.

"Spain has had an important success with its audience level, and is one of the countries with the highest number of MTV music events in its territory," said Antonio Campo Dall'Orto, director of MTV Southern Europe.

"Everything has changed since we launched MTV Spain 10 years ago, from TV in general to young people," added Dall'Orto. "Their interest in youth entertainment is more fragmented."

Bob Bakish, president of MTV Networks International, said the move to serve all Spanish youth "is all about creating multimedia brands in a country whose youth loves culture and music."

Dall'Orto explained the move, adding: "The MTV brand is much stronger now, our experience in content is much greater, the Spanish youth generation has changed a lot, Spain is a more dynamic society than we are used to, and an open channel gives us the visibility we seek."

Annechino said the new MTV Spain, which will target a 15-35-year age group, will have four pillars: series, docu-realities, MTV's own productions, and music.

"Our own production programs will begin in October with a program about four youths pursuing a dream, and the music element will not just be videos and events," he said. "We'll have live concerts such as the recent MTV Xacobeo that we presented in the Galicia region."

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