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REN TV founder buys NBC’s German channel Das Vierte

NBC Universal has sold its German free-to-air channel Das Vierte to Mini Movie Channel for an undisclosed sum.

NBC launched the channel back in 2005 in a rare international foray into free TV. It has sold it as it focuses on building its pay TV channels business, which comprises offerings including the Sci Fi channel, 13th Street and, since last year, kids channel KidsCo.

NBC management has said the company wants to double the size of its international business within three years.

Mini Movie Channel is owned by Dmitri Lesnevski the founder of Russian free-to-air channel RenTV. He sold his remaining interest in the Russian broadcaster to pan-European broadcast group RTL in 2005 and subsequently launched Mini Movie, a short film channel.