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Sony inks MENA formats deal with John de Mol’s Talpa

Sony Pictures Television Arabia, SPT’s Middle East and North Africa-focused production business announced earlier this week, has inked a formats deal with Talpa, the Netherlands-based media business owned by John de Mol.

The deal gives SPT Arabia the exclusive rights to coproduce Talpa formats in the region. Ziad Kebbi and Dany Karam, who founded Middle Eastern producer Elements TV and are running SPT Arabia, will manage the joint activities of the two companies.

Talpa has inked a raft of format exchange and format production deals with international companies, including with Sony’s Toro Produzioni in Italy.

“For Talpa Media, this agreement is as rational as it is effective,” said Talpa Media CEO Pim Schmitz. “Numerous broadcasters in North Africa and the Middle East have shown interest in our TV formats in the past and continue to do so. Ziad Kebbi is familiar with Talpa’s formats and has an extensive track record in the region.”

Kess Abrahams, SPT’s president, international production, said: “This agreement is an important development for SPT as a producer with a growing formats presence in the Middle East and North Africa.  Talpa already has a number of highly successful and established TV brands in the region and we look forward to working with them to expand that success and deliver to local broadcasters the high quality programming that viewers expect.”