Virgin Media's TV arm has confirmed it is planning a Virgin-branded TV channel, Virgin 1. Virgin Media Television (VMtv) said the creation of Virgin 1 would "cement VMtv's strategic presence across free, pay and on-demand digital TV platforms ahead of switchover in 2012", with distribution on Freeview, Virgin Media and digital satellite.
"The channel will also give VMtv more muscle to acquire and commission the very best US and UK programming," said VMtv.
The entertainment channel—which is due to launch in the autumn—will mix newly commissioned and acquired programming with user generated content (UGC) and shows from VMtv's pay-tv channels, Living, Bravo, Challenge and Trouble.
Celia Taylor has been appointed director of programming for Virgin 1 alongside her responsibilities for Bravo, Bravo 2, Challenge and Trouble. She will report to Claudia Rosencrantz, director of television at VMtv. Jonathan Webb, managing director of VMtv, said: "I want Virgin 1 and the newly reinvigorated Living to be two of the top ten TV channels by switchover. Virgin 1 will shake up multi-channel and free-to-air TV, and start liberating viewers from the linear schedule.
"It will be a creative tour de force and a cutting-edge example of any time, any place content. VMtv has huge support from Virgin Media and Richard Branson who agree that Virgin 1 is what UK audiences have been waiting for."
Virgin 1 will replace VMtv's current free-to-air channel, Ftn. It will broadcast for 12 hours (6pm to 6am) on Freeview, with a 24 hour schedule on Virgin Media and satellite.
Lovelace Consulting | 12.06.2007