Cartoon Network Africa’s Future Plans For More Local Content And Viewing Ratings Performance
South African media news website – The Media Online has interviewed the channel manager of Turner Africa (and France) – Julien Borde, in the interview, Julien talked about the new pop-up channel in Africa – Superhero HQ, new local content and viewing ratings.
Interview Summary With Julien Borde:
The full interview can be viewed on the following link: https://themediaonline.co.za/2019/03/from-superheroes-and-american-blockbusters-to-local-partnerships/
Regarding the temporary pop-up channel – Superhero HQ (Super-powered by Cartoon Network), Julien said a channel was needed to target both adults and kids, as 51% of CN’s audience are in fact adults and includes adults who watch animation with their children, as TV shows and movies about superheroes are popular at the moment, it was an ideal theme for the pop-up channel. Superhero HQ was set up to air during the school holidays, which is when children’s television broadcasters have a captive audience and Cartoon Network wanted to make use of its animation library, which includes CN’s original programming, content from Warner Bros. Animation and some acquisitions. In order to localise the channel for an African audience, Turner hired South African comedian Mojak Lehoko who created some superhero related comedy sketches for the channel.
Local Content and Localisation
Julien Borde also said that there will be more local content appearing on Cartoon Network Africa very soon, including a second season of the dance show – Pop Up Party and magic show – WOOALA! Pop Up Party season two will feature 15 super-talented kids from different backgrounds in Cape Town going head to head to express themselves through movement and dance. In WOOALA!, Wian, a 23-year-old South African magician, will use everyday objects to perform illusions and magic tricks that will amaze children and their parents.
Cartoon Network Africa also developed its new Creative Lab initiative, which is an opportunity for potential African animated show creators. The winning shorts are currently being produced and will be shown at DISCOP Johannesburg 2019 in November. After some market research, it was revealed that the African market is very interested in anime as a comic form, Cartoon Network Africa has acknowledged the findings and will premiere a new anime series on Cartoon Network Africa on Saturday 27th April – Bakugan: Battle Planet.
Viewing Ratings, VOD, Content Distribution
Turner’s content is distributed to 56 different countries in Africa, because of local differences, Turner has to make sure its content is suitable for each market it broadcasts to. Turner Africa had a successful end to 2018 with the children’s channel multiplex (Cartoon Network, Boomerang, Boing and Toonami) and TNT reaching new viewing rating highs.
Cartoon Network remains to be the favourite children’s channel in South Africa, dominating the top 15 best performing shows. Cartoon Network’s Ben 10, Apple and Onion and Craig of the Creek are particularly popular in Africa. Boomerang is also growing, its now the second favourite childrens channel in Africa, for kids aged between 4 and 14 years old, it’s also the second most popular channel in French speaking Africa (Boomerang France is received in Francophone Africa). Recently, TNT was the second movie channel within the total African movie channel movie market (source: AGB Nielsen).
In Africa, conventional linear pay-TV is still a popular option for entertainment, however Turner has worked with DStv to provide programming on its Catch Up VOD (Video On-Demand) service and is distributing Boing Africa and Toonami Africa on Cell-C’s live-streaming service – Black. Turner also formed a partnership with South Africa-based streaming service Showmax, the deal included Cartoon Network, Boomerang and Adult Swim programming.