That ol’ Disney corporate synergy didn’t take long to come together for this deal: Just months after Disney bought it, online powerhouse Maker Studios said it will partner with digital-video channel Fusion (owned by a Disney/ABC joint venture with Univision) to create a Maker Block of branded programming. Maker CEO Ynon Kreiz announced the deal as part of his Mipcom keynote speech today.
Under the deal, Maker will produce TV programming for Fusion featuring various themes culled from its 55,000 YouTube channels, beginning with a “Best of 2014” compilation. The unscripted Maker Block will feature many of Maker’s stars, in thematically grouped clips.
Maker also will work to bolster Fusion’s existing YouTube channel by adding it to Maker’s online offerings.
“Maker has an exceptional track record for identifying talent and content that resonates with millennials in the digital space,” said Fusion CEO Isaac Lee. “We are thrilled to bring some of that content to our television audience. We expect this will be just the beginning of a powerful, dynamic partnership with Maker.”
Disney bought Maker earlier this year in a deal valued at up to $950 million. Maker is the largest of the s0-called MCNs, which bundle together hundreds or thousands of individual YouTube channels based on broadly connected areas of focus, then sells targeted advertising. Maker, like many of its largest competitors, also creates its own programming and otherwise works to maximize exposure and opportunities for its talent.
Fusion is a youth-focused cable and digital video channel owned under a joint venture between Disney’s ABC network and Univision Communications. It features news, comedy and lifestyle programming targeting millennials. It is carried online and by a number of major pay-TV operators, including Dish Network, Charter, Cox, AT&T and Verizon.