Sky will increase UK programming spend to £600m

BSkyB last night pledged to increase the amount it spends on UK-originated original programming by 50% over the next three years, taking the total to £600 million.

Specifically, Sky said there will be a three-fold increase in the amount of drama on its channels over the next three years. New drama series include Power’s TV movie Neverland,  new series of Mad Dogs and Strike Back and an unspecified project from Paul Abbott (State of Play).

Sky also committed to tripling the programming budget for its arts and culture channel Sky Arts

Jeremy Darroch, CEO of the News Corp-backed UK pay TV platform, made the announcement in a speech given at an event organised by UK think tank Reform.

“Our plans will take our original entertainment to an entirely different scale, complementing our existing strengths in sport, movies and news,” Darroch said. “They will mean working with the best production, writing and acting talent and will require focus and creative ambition as well as sustained financial investment.”