Freedomland Makes Equity Investment Of 10 Million Euro In Intertainer

CULVER CITY, Calif. and MILAN, Italy, June 05, 2002 - Broadband video on demand (VOD) leader Intertainer and Italian new media conglomerate Freedomland today announced plans to form a joint venture to launch an Internet Protocol (IP) VOD service for broadband customers throughout Europe. The joint venture, to be named Intertainer Europe, will be modeled after Intertainer's U.S. based broadband VOD service, available at, and will feature a mix of American and European-produced content.

Intertainer Europe, in charge of the overall European operations, will be owned 51% by Freedomland spa and 49% by Intertainer; Freedomland will invest 15 million Euro in the joint venture. In addition, Freedomland will make an equity investment of 10 million Euro in Intertainer, taking a minority stake in the company.

As part of the long-term exclusive agreement, Intertainer will work closely with Freedomland to assist in the acquisition of content. Intertainer will also make its patented technology platform available to the joint venture, ultimately giving European broadband subscribers the first widely available VOD service to feature premium content. Intertainer Europe will be headquartered in Italy and will be distributed in more than forty countries, including Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and The United Kingdom.

According to the U.S. based research company Screen Digest, Europe's broadband VOD user base is projected to reach 2.6 million users by 2005, up from an estimated base of 200,000 this year. Additionally, an April 2002 report from Brean Murray Reseach projects that the European VOD market will exceed the $2 billion pay-per-view market over time.

"Intertainer pioneered the VOD space in the U.S., deploying on both IP and digital cable platforms and amassing the industry's best slate of content," said Intertainer CEO Jonathan Taplin. "We believe the time is right to bring this service to Europe's broadband subscribers, so that they may enjoy on demand access to the wealth of cinema, music and television programming produced locally and abroad. Freedomland shares this vision and is a welcome addition to Intertainer's existing roster of forward-thinking shareholders, including Microsoft, Intel, Sony, Thomson, Qwest, NBC and Comcast."

"Europe has yet to see the emergence of a high-quality, robust VOD service aimed at broadband subscribers, so we feel there is a tremendous opportunity to take a leadership position in this market," said Willy Burkhardt, Managing Director of Freedomland. "As Europe's largest Internet TV company, Freedomland is ideally positioned to capitalize on the current demand for broadband VOD content. With the help of Intertainer's proven expertise in the U.S., Intertainer Europe will no doubt grow to become a revolutionary new entertainment platform."

Like its U.S.-based counterpart, Intertainer Europe will use Microsoft's Windows Media technology to ensure users the best streaming media video and audio experience. Content will be protected with Windows Media Digital Rights Management to give customers seamless access to their video selections while protecting the rights of content owners. Content will play in an embedded Windows Media Player that offers full VCR functionality, allowing viewers to pause, rewind and fast-forward their video selections. Video content available through the Intertainer service is encoded at 500 Kbps using Windows Media Video 8 to deliver a high quality full-screen video experience.

"Intertainer is the first VOD provider to put all of the pieces together - great technology, top-tier entertainment content and a user-friendly, secure service - to make video on demand work for U.S. home viewers and is now poised to mirror its success in Europe with the help of Freedomland," said Will Poole, vice president of the Windows New Media Platforms Division at Microsoft. "This new joint venture will be an important showcase for the Windows Media platform in Europe and we look forward to working with Intertainer and Freedomland to make it a tremendous success."

# # #

About Intertainer

A pioneer in the video on demand space, Intertainer provides two major services: A broadband entertainment on demand service, available at, offering U.S. subscribers instant access to the largest selection of premium movies, music and television programming; and industry leading video on demand content aggregation for cable operators. Intertainer features content from unprecedented partner relationships including Universal Pictures, Warner Bros., DreamWorks SKG, MGM, A&E Networks, NBC, PBS, Discovery, ESPN, Warner Music, EMI Music and many others. Strategic partners include Thomson, Comcast, Intel, Microsoft, NBC, Qwest and Sony.

Contact: Louise Rasho, 310-895-2112,

About Freedomland

The first European Company to offer a complete solution for ITV application, Freedomland is today active in the new media business providing innovative content and services that aim at converting television into an interactive and versatile tool; it also offers strategic consulting for those business models developing interactive communication solutions. The mission of the company is to create and distribute multimedia video content and advertising associated to services related to their distribution via multi channel technology platform.

Freedomland is a company listed at the Milan Stock Exchange.

Contact: Sara Balzarotti, (02) 76067432,