SRMG, the largest integrated media group from the Mena region, has unveiled Asharq Discovery, a new free-to-view Arabic-language infotainment platform, in partnership with Warner Bros Discovery.
Going live, Asharq Discovery will showcase thousands of hours of premium content from Discovery’s critically acclaimed catalogue, as well as hand-picked acquisitions from all over the region and an exciting lineup of original productions.
The launch of the new platform responds directly to changing viewer preferences and the surging demand for Arabic-language content. A recent SRMG survey found that over 80% of viewers in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region are eager for more Arabic shows.
To cater to a diverse regional audience, the platform offers a wide range of genres, including pop science and engineering, crime and mystery, motoring, adventure and travel, food and cooking, wildlife and nature, lifestyle, and reality.
Asharq Discovery features exclusive programmes from Warner Bros. Discovery’s award-winning catalogue including beloved titles from Discovery, Animal Planet, TLC, Investigation Discovery, HGTV, Food Network, and regional favourite, Fatafeat. The selected programmes are fully reversioned with Arabic voiceovers and graphics. At launch, Asharq Discovery’s lineup includes shows never before seen in Arabic and for free including Gold Rush, 90 Day Fiancé, Morgan Freeman’s Through the Wormhole, and Wheeler Dealers.
Asharq Discovery is the result of a long-term strategic partnership between SRMG and Warner Bros. Discovery. Beyond SRMG’s content selection rights from Warner Bros. Discovery’s catalogue, this collaboration will involve the co-production of up to 30 hours per year with Warner Bros. Discovery and HBO. These collaborations will create authentic and compelling stories about Mena, offering opportunities for regional talent since production will take place within the region. Furthermore, Warner Bros. Discovery has the option to globally distribute co-produced content through the Warner Bros Discovery platforms and services, thereby showcasing regional narratives to a global audience.
Jomana R. Al-Rashid, CEO of SRMG, said: "Asharq Discovery’s launch is a direct response to the growing demand and changing consumption habits. We can see from several studies that there is an increase in the demand for audio and visual content across our region. The new free-to-view platform is the latest example of SRMG’s transformation strategy in action. At SRMG, we are dedicated to enhancing and expanding our media portfolio and elevating the media and entertainment ecosystem in the region. Just this past month, we launched Asharq Documentary, dedicated to uncovering the stories behind the headlines in politics, business and economics, and history.
“Now, with Asharq Discovery, we continue to redefine the viewing experience with seven distinct genres, each offering a fresh perspective on storytelling. The Asharq Discovery platform is unique as it provides a wide range of exceptional content in Arabic, and for the first time, for free. Our partnership with Warner Bros Discovery is testament to our ambition to produce and showcase award-winning, authentic content that captivates and inspires audiences both here in our region and across the globe. The launch is just the start; we have extremely ambitious plans for co-production, and I look forward to watching the platform’s growth.”
Jamie Cooke, GM CEE, Middle East & Turkey of Warner Bros. Discovery, said: “The entertainment industry in the Mena region is an area of major global talent and transformative growth. We have seen immense changes over the last few years, and Mena audiences are eager for fresh and new content. I am excited to start developing Arabic content that can inspire viewers not just in the region but Arabic speaking audiences around the world. Warner Bros. Discovery has the greatest and broadest collection of brands, franchises, and storytelling IP in the world, and we’re excited to provide a new free-to-view channel where we can reach new audiences and bring them our stories through our partnership with SRMG.”
SRMG boasts a track record of successful partnerships with a prestigious lineup that includes Bloomberg Media, The Independent Group and Billboard.
Asharq Discovery is the latest addition to SRMG’s award-winning 'Asharq News Network’, which includes Asharq News and Asharq Business with Bloomberg, the fastest growing news channels in the Mena region for the past three years, along with the recently launched Asharq Documentary, featuring hard-hitting and factual documentary content.
Asharq Discovery is accessible free-to-view across the region through satellite coverage on Arabsat and Nilesat, and through the catch-up service Asharq NOW and Asharq Discovery’s social media platforms.--TradeArabia News Service
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