Aftonbladet TV signs deal with CNN, Al JeezeraPhoto: Screenshot/Wikimedia Commons.

Swedish Aftonbladet TV signs deals with CNN, Al Jazeera

Publicerad: 21 January 2016, kl. 10:57

Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet has struck a television deal with CNN and Al Jazeera, which provides the paper with an opportunity to expand its international coverage.

Adam Jönsson

‘‘We’ve negotiated throughout the fall and now the deal is in place. It’s important to have collaborations with global news organizations in our present time with an anxious world,’’ Martin Ekelund, acting news director at Aftonbladet, told Swedish trade publication Resumé Wednesday.

The deal with CNN took effect at the beginning of the year. Aftonbladet TV, the television department of the newspaper, will be able to broadcast images from international news events. At the same time, CNN can use images from the Swedish tabloid during major news events in the Scandinavian country.

Read more: Swedish newspaper Expressen signs TV deal with CNN

Aftonbladet is following in the steps of its biggest competitor, Expressen, who struck a similar deal with CNN in December of last year.

‘‘If you are realistic, it’s not very often that CNN would want news coming out of Sweden. But it’s good to have the opportunity to get pictures from big news stories,’’ Thomas Mattsson, Expressen’s editor-in-chief, told Smashdig in December. ‘‘What I think is interesting is that Expressen gets access to content we didn’t have before. Live feeds during big news events are strengthening our profile.’’

Read more: Mattsson on CNN deal: Expressen not on losing side

One of the biggest CNN contributions to Aftonbladet will be the American network’s coverage of the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

A number of CNN profiles will appear on Aftonbladet TV’s morning show to discuss the election. It’s not yet determined which CNN employees Aftonbladet’s audience can expect to hear from. But profiles such as Anderson Cooper and Christine Amanpour are being named as potential experts together with, among others, Wolf Blitzer, according to Resumé.

‘‘A lot of the debates and primaries are finished late at night [in the U.S.]. In terms of time-difference that works well with our morning show. We will be able to show pictures from the debates and get comments from experts,’’ Ekelund tells Resumé.

Read more: Exclusive: Aftonbladet TV’s strategy to become number one

Aftonbladet’s deal with Al Jazeera encapsulates documentaries produced by the Qatari broadcaster.

The paper will broadcast a number of documentaries, for example one about the leadership of ISIS, starting this spring.

The films will be available for free online.

Aftonbladet and rival Expressen have throughout the past year invested a lot of resources in strengthening the papers’ television departments.

Expressen has recruited a number of well-known broadcasters. The paper also signed a deal with BuzzFeed last year to feature the American viral site’s video content on its own site.

Aftonbladet TV struck a deal with cable TV distributor Boxer in December of last year where a number of Aftonbladet shows will be available for Boxer’s customers on a number of platforms.

Read more: Aftonbladet TV signs strategic long-term deal with Boxer

Aftonbladet could in the same month also announce it had secured the rights to this year’s Oscars award show on Feb. 28.

Read more: Aftonbladet TV secure exclusive rights to 88th Oscars

‘‘This deal, with exclusive rights to broadcast live during one of the world’s biggest entertainment happenings, is a big and definitive recognition of Aftonbladet as a player on the TV market,’’ Jan Scherman, head of Aftonbladet TV, said in a press release.

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