Discovery Communications will launch a weekly Discovery Kids program block on the Discovery Channel, as well as a new 24-hour digital children’s TV channel in the United States and an analog Latin American children’s television channel.
The new investment in children’s programming is based in part on current audience statistics showing that 40 percent of children two to 17 watch the Discovery Channel at least once each month. Additional initiatives are in development that include international markets and multimedia productions.
The new children’s block on the Discovery Channel consists of a weekly, three-hour Sunday morning block of children’s programs to debut before the end of the first quarter of 1997. The 9 a.m. to noon block will be targeted at eight to 14 year olds.
Discovery Networks, U.S. will launch the Discovery Kids network, a new 24-hour digital channel, beginning October 22. Discovery Networks, International will launch a Discovery Kids network in Latin America on November 4. The Discovery Kids networks will feature a variety of children’s programming for children of all ages.
Discovery will also introduce Discovery Kids stores in select markets throughout the U.S. (see story on page 85). Currently, children constitute 25 percent of Discovery’s The Nature Company retail business.
Discovery Enterprises Worldwide expects the initiatives will lead to additional kid-targeted products. Further information on future activities will be announced in the coming months.