Zurich, 07 September 2006
Betty TV (Schweiz) AG, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Swisscom Fixnet Ltd, has already been organising Betty TV offerings in Switzerland for the broadcasters SF 1, SF zwei, Sat.1, ProSieben, RTL, Star TV and Tele Bärn since June. The high level of acceptance among the 5,000 plus customers, the great interest shown by the advertising industry and cooperation with the broadcasters have prompted Swisscom Fixnet to develop its commitment in this area and, with the takeover of Betty Holding AG, to launch the offering in Germany. To this end, a long-term cooperation agreement for the market launch of Betty TV in Germany at the beginning of 2007 has been concluded with the ProSiebenSat.1 Group.
As the digitisation of television progresses, TV viewers will want to get involved and have a say in TV programmes in a more interactive way. As results to date have confirmed, Betty TV satisfies a viewer need. With this concept, Swisscom is opening up new and innovative opportunities for TV broadcasters in the areas of customer loyalty and value-added services, and presenting advertisers with a completely new platform for creating integrated dialogue with TV viewers. In so doing, Swisscom is reinforcing its strategy of developing new revenue generators in associated business areas.
Thanks to the conclusion of the cooperation agreement with the ProSiebenSat.1 Group, it has been possible to get Germany's largest broadcasting family with the individual broadcasters Sat 1, ProSieben, kabel eins and N24 on board to support the rapid introduction of Betty TV in Germany, not only among TV viewers but also among advertisers and agencies. The broadcasting group will accompany the launch with classic media activities on TV, teletext and online and thus guarantee a rapid increase in awareness of the Betty offering. Marketer of commercial spots SevenOne Media GmbH will actively market the Betty TV direct marketing tool in Germany. Partnerships are also planned in Germany with a large publishing house and a customer loyalty programme.
The subsidiaries Betty Technology AG (Zug), Betty TV AG (Munich) and Betty TV Entwicklungs- und Dienstleistungs GmbH (Munich), with around 50 employees, will be run via the acquired company, Betty Holding AG (Zurich). These subsidiaries have been developing the Betty technology since 2003 and successfully tested it in cooperation with the ProSiebenSat.1 Group in a field test in Germany at the end of 2004. With the launch in Germany at the start of 2007 in mind, operational implementation with TV broadcasters was initiated in Switzerland at the beginning of 2006. Wolfram Schmidt will become the new CEO of Betty TV Holding AG, while Ulrich Dietiker (Chairman), Christian Hütwohl, Urs Schmidig, Prof. Dr. Helmut Thoma and Dr. Ingo Mantzke will take up positions on the Board of Directors.
The interactive Betty remote control has its own display and selection keys so that the viewer can interact directly when watching television. Betty replaces the conventional remote control and, with additional offerings to accompany programmes, offers genuine added value for the TV viewer. Using Betty, every user can immediately get involved, regardless of whether they receive their programmes via cable, satellite or antenna, in analogue or digital format. Betty also offers a free, direct feedback channel via telephone to the TV broadcaster. Content, comprising competitions, quizzes, votes, surveys, information and promotional offers, are compiled in close collaboration with the TV broadcasters. The Betty remote control can currently be purchased in the shops and online for CHF 69. In Germany, the Betty set will be offered at the price of EUR 39.90.