Sport1 Medien AG
EM.TV & Merchandising AG was a German independent entertainment company founded by Thomas and Florian Haffa in 1989, based in Ismaning. Its initials stand for Entertainment and Merchandising.
In 1996, EM.TV launched a new channel for preschoolers called Junior. Two years later, the company joined ventures with Yoram Gross Film Studio (best known as the producer of the Blinky Bill franchise) to produce and distribute its shows internationally after a buyout by Village Roadshow. The rights to those shows, as well as the Junior library were purchased by Belgian animation company Studio 100 in 2006.
In February 2000, EM.TV bought The Jim Henson Company for $680 million. Later that year, it acquired 50% of SLEC Ltd., known for being the holding company of the Formula One racing series. These acquisitions turned out to be a financial failure, as EM.TV's stocks quickly began to plummet. This led to the company selling full rights of Sesame Street to Sesame Workshop, and subsequently The Muppets to The Walt Disney Company. In 2003, The Jim Henson Company was bought back by the Henson family for $84 million, while Thomas and Florian Haffa were subsequently fined for having deceived shareholders during the ownership.
In 2000, EM.TV began releasing its titles on home video in Germany and other countries, including various series and movies from the Junior library. Following EM.TV's acquisition by Universum Film GmBH, Universum continued distributing the EM.TV/Studio 100 library on DVD for a few years. After the deal expired, Studio 100 took over distribution by transferring it to their own home video division based in Germany.
In September 2001, former Sat.1 CEO Werner Klatten became the new CEO of EM.TV. He restructured the company, announced he would sell most of the company's assets and directed the purchase of German sports TV station DSF. In 2008, EM.TV was renamed to EM.Sport Media AG before being changed again to Constantin Medien AG the following year. On February 13, 2018, a takeover by Highlight Communications AG was completed. On September 26, 2019, the company was delisted from the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. At the Annual General Meeting 2019, the change of name to Sport1 Medien AG was resolved. The change was entered in the Commercial Register of the City of Munich (HRB 148 760) on January 2, 2020 and thus became effective. The change of name is also accompanied by a change in the Company's purpose, which was also resolved by the Annual General Meeting in July last year and is now more strongly aligned to the Company's activities in the digital sector.
1st Logo (as EM.TV & Merchandising AG) (January 1, 1993-June 23, 2004)
Logo: Panning though a black and blue space background with stars, a shape that is red on the front and the rest of the sides in silver comes flying sideways from the front of the screen before turning clockwise and stopping down. It is revealed to be a row of three diagonal rectangles above a short zig-zagged "M" which represents the company's first two initials, "EM". It morphs from 3-D to 2-D, while at the same time, the background fades to black. Below, a spark of light wipes across to reveal the text "EM.TV & MERCHANDISING AG" in white.
- On Fairy Tale Police Department and Weird-Ohs, a still version is shown.
- On season 3 of Blinky Bill, a variant with a white background with dark green "WAVERY" is used.
- On early seasons of the aforementioned show, the logo is white and in-credit.
- On the start of Junior videos and DVDs, the text is in a different small font.
- On Rainbow Fish, it cuts to where the text wipes in.
- The logo is in-credit on The Adventures of Blinky Bill, The World of Tosh, Old Tom, and Creepschool.
Technique: Entirely CGI.
Music/Sounds: A calm synthesizer with a light soaring upbeat, a quiet clash, and a clicking sound when the text is formed.
- Most shows had the closing theme playing over it.
- On Weird-Ohs, a shortened version of the music was used.
Availability: Rare. It was seen on The Adventures of Blinky Bill, the first two seasons of Flipper and Lopaka, Fairy Tale Police Department, Old Tom, Rainbow Fish, The World of Tosh, Creepschool, former Amazon Prime Video prints of Twipsy, and Tabaluga & Leo: A Christmas Adventure. It was also seen on various DVDs under the Junior label as a de-facto home video logo.
2nd Logo (2004-2008)
Logo: On a red background, we see a redesigned EM.TV symbol with the text "EM.TV", all in white.
Music/Sounds: None or the closing theme of the show.