With the first anniversary of YouTube’s original channels initiative around the corner, the video streaming site announced on Sunday that it is rolling out its 100+ original channels to France, Germany and the UK.
YouTube is also launching 60 new channels ranging from cooking to sports programming. You may be familiar with some of the big names involved: the BBC, celebrity chef Jamie Oliver and reality television producers Endemol (“Big Brother”) and FremantleMedia (“American Idol”). The roster also has some American-based producers, including the aptly-titled fitness channel Being Fat Sucks and women’s entertainment and beauty channel Popsugar.
The YouTube blog post promoting the new original channels read: “Our goal with this channels expansion, along with the grants and educational programs we’ve launched in the past year, is to bring an even broader range of entertainment to YouTube, giving you more reasons to keep coming back again and again. And for advertisers, these channels will represent a new way to engage and reach their global consumers.”
The French newspaper Le Figaro reported in July that YouTube would expand its original channel abroad last summer, with France as the first country outside the United States to launch that content. The report stated that YouTube was working with local production companies to create more than a dozen channels from lifestyle to sports. In addition to pushing original programming, YouTube has cemented its position in Europe by opening up its creators’ space in London days before the 2012 Summer Olympics.
YouTube’s original channels initiative expansion into Europe signals their global aim focusing on gaining viewership through content involving larger, well-known production companies and talents, rather than through user-generated content.