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225 —
12-01/2012 —
TELE-satellite International — The World‘s Largest Digital TV Trade Magazine
was responsible for planning and imple-
menting all structures and processes of
the new broadcasting center in relation
to production, broadcasting and IT, and
now runs the operations.
RTL media group is a leading media
corporation whose portfolio consists of
fully-owned free TV channels RTL Tel-
evision, VOX and n-tv, as well as share-
holdings in RTL II and SUPER RTL and
pay TV channels RTL Crime, Passion
and RTL Living.
Mido Fayad heads the broadcasting
department and has some in-depth in-
formation: “Here in Cologne our broad-
casting engineers and technicians look
after the RTL, VOX and Super RTL net-
works for Germany, Austria and Swit-
zerland, as well as the special interest
channels RTL Crime, RTL Living and
Passion. In addition, we distribute the
n-tv news channel from here. Our sec-
ond location in Munich/Grünwald takes
care of RTL II for Germany, Austria and
CBC is also the broadcasting center of
choice for a number of content provid-
ers outside the RTL media group, such
as Channel 21, for example, whose pro-
gram is also distributed via CBC.
Not only is CBC in charge of the tech-
nical aspects of broadcasting and play-
out, but has turned into an full-service
provider. According to Fayad, “the new
broadcasting center features four fully-
fledged studios, a range of sets for TV
productions, as well as in excess of 70
post-production units. We also produce
German Bundesliga live coverage for
distribution outside Germany. On behalf
of Sportcast we offer complete match
coverage and produce highlight seg-
ments in foreign languages.” CBC is live
on air on all 34 match days of the year
and distributes Bundesliga broadcasts
to more than 180 countries around the
Project manager Wilfried Klinke steps
in to add that all technology used is fully
HDTV compatible. “RTL, VOX and RTL
II are offering their channels in HDTV
at this point,” says Klinke. Naturally,
each network or channel decides inde-
pendently whether or not to offer HDTV.
“We even have experience with 3D pro-
ductions,” Wilfried Klinke hastens to
add, providing further proof of CBC’s
technical capabilities.
Originally, CBC was an offspring of
the technical department of the VOX
channel, which in its early days was
positioned as in infotainment channel
within the RTL media group and thus
was equipped with state-of-the-art pro-
duction and broadcasting equipment
right from the start. CBC employees
Wilfried Klinke and Mido Fayad have
been with the business from those early
days. When the VOX technical depart-
ment became CBC in 1994 they were
two specialists among 50. These days
CBC has a staff of 500, 40 of which are
in charge of broadcasting, which at CBC
is called distribution. A much larger
share of employees is needed for con-
tribution, which basically means con-
tent production.
One of the high points at CBC is its
electronic archive. “All broadcasts of
RTL media group channels are saved in
file format,” Mido Fayad explains while
leading us to a high-security area of
the building which houses the so-called
‘Contentbank’, a term CBC uses for its
enormous file-based archiving system.
9 petabyte of storage capacity are re-
quired to hold more than 160,000 hours
of content. Burnt onto CDs and stapled
one on top of the other you would end
up with a 16 km high pile of CDs; and
that’s without jewel cases!
Looking at this impressive electronic
archive a question that comes to mind
is availability of stored content from