With over 130 networks across 210 countries, Discovery Communications’ global reach is vast. However, this week, Discovery extended its international commitment with the signing of an unprecedented partnership with the Colombian government and the opening of the company’s 38th international office in Bogota, Colombia — a key market in the booming Latin American business.
Discovery’s portfolio in Colombia includes six networks enjoys great success: Discovery Channel is the #1 factual channel, Home & Health is the #1 lifestyle channel among W18-49, and Discovery Kids is the #1 channel among kids A4-6 and also #1 among W18-34.
Yesterday, Discovery President & CEO David Zaslav and President & Managing Director of DNLA/USH Enrique Martinez signed an agreement with the Colombian government, through its Ministry of Information Technology and Communications (TIC) and Radio Television Nacional de Colombia, to collaborate on programming development and production. Before the signing, Zaslav and Martinez, joined by Discovery colleagues, met privately with President Juan Manuel Santos at Casa de Nariño. The partnership — the first of its kind in Colombia’s history — will leverage the expertise of local talent and result in programming that will air in Colombia and on Discovery’s networks around the world.
To date, Discovery has invested more than $1 billion on programming and has established an international production and development group under the leadership of Colombian native Luis Silberwasser. To appeal to both a global and a local audience, Discovery Channel recently produced a number of documentaries based on Colombian themes and news angles, including Ingrid Betancourt; the Castaño brothers (Paramilitares en Colombia); Pablo Escobar (Pecados de mi padre) and Operación Sodoma: la caída del mono Jojoy, a program detailing of intelligence work that allowed the Colombian authorities to determine the precise location of the leader of the FARC that broke audience records. Discovery has also tapped local Colombian talent, including world-renowned singer Juanes, who led the Spanish narration for the iconic Discovery Channel series Life.
With the addition of Bogota, there are now six offices spanning Discovery Networks Latin America‘s business, which launched in 1994.