Sky extends HBO deal across Europe

True-Detective season twoSky’s role as the exclusive home of HBO programming will be extended beyond the UK and across all of the 21st Century Fox-backed pay TV firm’s European territories.

A new deal sees Sky take first-run rights to HBO shows in the UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria and Italy, and includes extensive on-demand rights.

Upcoming big-ticket HBO programming includes Mick Jagger-produced music period drama Vinyl, sci-fi reboot Westworld and Sky-HBO-Canal+ coproduction The Young Pope, which stars Jude Law and Diane Keaton.

The agreement comes after Sky UK, which also houses the Irish arm, took over Sky Deutschland (which contains Sky Austria too) and Sky Italia and merged them to create a pan-European pay TV giant with 21 million customers last year.

The shows will play of Sky Atlantic channels and be aired simultaneously with US broadcasts where possible.

The various Sky operations will also get access to the entire HBO library, with boxset windows extending for “longer periods”. Significantly, this means all episodes of True Detective will be available on-demand for the first time.

HBO content will be available on platforms such as Sky Go, Now TV and Sky Online on various devices.

Sky’s UK arm first struck a £150 million (US$227.2 million) agreement with HBO to launch Sky Atlantic as the home of HBO programming in Britain in 2010.

The news comes soon after a series of executive changes at Sky that have seen former Sky Deutschland programming boss Gary Davey replace Endemol Shine Group CEO Sophie Turner Laing as managing director of content, and Adam MacDonald take on a wider role at Sky UK after the exit of long-serving entertainment channels chief Stuart Murphy.

“This new agreement, Sky’s first pan-European content deal, confirms Sky Atlantic as the home of HBO in all our markets both live and on-demand,” said Davey. “Sky and HBO share many common values, as well as a passion for high-quality television like Game of Thrones and Veep. Our partnership, in its sixth year, now escalates to a whole new level.”

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