What are the challenges that domestic television networks face, how do they deal with them, what do all these changes mean for the domestic market, has television lost part of its magic, and what is absolutely the most watched network in Croatia? These are just some of the questions that were answered by the leading people of the three largest national TV networks. Dražen Mavrić, CEO of Nova TV; Branko Čakarmiš, President of RTL Hrvatska; and HRT General Director Robert Šveb, openly discussed current events on television and upcoming trends with moderator and TV presenter Petar Štefanić.
Although television is consumed today in a different way compared to 30 years ago, the panelists agreed that television has not lost its magic, on the contrary – it has only gained with the advancement of new technology. The leading figures of the three national television networks explained why they air the news at the same time and what they think about the Law on Electronic Media. “The new Law on Electronic Media has done a lot of bad things. All of us who work here and pay taxes have a huge regulatory burden. Instead of helping us in this context, we are being retaliated against. Local TV production is the key to success or failure. The new law favoures telecoms, while in this country no one has a framework to help media companies find their place under the sun,” said Dražen Mavrić from Nova TV, which has been the most watched network in Croatia for 12 years in a row. Branko Čakarmiš publicly congratulated him on this feat and followed up on the topic: “I don’t know how many creative people are here now, but I have never experienced that coercion helped creative people to develop and use their potential. We don’t need coercion from the state, because it has no idea what is a good or bad series or a good or bad script. Imagine that we all ordered 10 new TV series each. Who will write them? Who will film them? There is no production, we are the production service market.”
“Linear television lost the younger audience. However, everyone returns to HTV when there is an emergency, when war breaks out, an earthquake strikes or we have to calculate future natural gas prices.” said HTV’s Robert Šveb.
Petar Štefanić concluded that we are a country where everything is regulated, even how far you must stand from the oven to avoid catching fire. The topic was further ignited by the upcoming World Cup in Qatar and the fact that HRT is the only one carrying the games. Although he would prefer football to be played in July, Dražen Mavrić said that his network was capable of surviving anything. They started with Kumovi (Godfathers) and MasterChef, both formats are doing great, and soon they will start with Supertalent as well. RTL’s autumn lineup, in addition to their news program, will feature more entertainment – Večera za 5 (Dinner for 5), Život na vagi (Life on the Scale), as well as something new during the World Cup. And while we didn’t found out what exactly that is, we are certain that we will all cheer for the Croatian national team together, but each in our own way.