World News – GB – BritBox ‘performs well’ as it ramps up original drive and looks to international expansion

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UK SVOD streamer BritBox is performing well as it prepares for the launch of its first original content and accelerates its international expansion plans, according to senior executives behind the project

“We are very happy with the way the performance went,” said Will Harrison, Managing Director of BritBox UK at a Broadcasting Press Guild “virtual lunch” event. He said the service had expanded its reach through multiple device launches as well as the addition of new features, including the launch of an annual subscription plan at a more competitive price

Harrison said BritBox has prepared their list of originals, which is set to kick off on Saturday with the reboot of the satirical puppet show Spitting Image

The Beast Must Die, a second original, a drama series based on a 1938 novel by Cecil Day-Lewis also filmed in 1974 by Claude Chabrol (Que la bête meure) is currently in production on the Isle of Wight

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Harrison said BritBox received a boost from the COVID pandemic which has continued He said average viewership rates increased during the pandemic but the production schedule was impacted.However, it said Spitting Image was one of the first shows to go into production during the lockdown

Harrison said having a catalog was good for building subscriber loyalty, but the original commissions had a « subscriber acquisition role to play » for SVOD services

He said BritBox will look to develop its original slate more widely Harrison said BB will join « sister companies in other markets » as its international rollout grows, to create shows

Harrison said BritBox had just launched FilmFour on the service as well, having signed to Channel 4 earlier this year, with plans to increase that to 50 films

Harrison said the expansion of catch-up windows for iPlayer and ITV Hub means BritBox is also reviewing non-exclusive content However, he said two-thirds of the content remained fully proprietary « so we could live with a little bit of overlap » He said BritBox could also serve as a full-box repository while catch-up services

When it comes to distribution, Harrison said BritBox primarily focuses on developing direct relationships and deploying devices rather than developing relationships with platforms. However, BT is launching a broadband subscriber offer in October with Britbox for six months for free, he said.

Speaking at the same event, ITV Group Director, SVOD, Reemah Sakaan said BritBox now has access to a good content pipeline.She said Channel 4 and Five, which provide programming to the service but are not shareholders, were increasingly taking second window rights that they could syndicate to BritBox, even though they did not have the same content ownership as the BBC, for example

Responding to plans to strengthen the service’s international presence, she said BritBox would primarily target English-language entertainment markets, including large markets such as India, as well as « passion-driven » markets. Such as the Nordic territories She said the JV would look at different structures depending on the specific opportunity, with some potentially taking a B2B2C form rather than a direct D2C approach

Asked by DTVE about BritBox’s proposal in markets where its JV partners also have the option to license content directly to third parties, Sakaan said the service could offer a wide range of content, including theater and live performances as well as archive series

She said the range in each market would depend on a number of factors including local affinity and attractiveness of the service and the market gap in terms of availability of UK content in each territory

She said BritBox’s parentage gave her access to information about BBC and ITV commissions and enabled « upstream and forward conversations » that ensured « the pipeline can be a bit more predictable »

In the long run, she said, BritBox would have access to more content as existing agreements expire

« In the US there was no dedicated home for UK content and there was a lot that had never been seen before, and we launched day in and day out In Canada [UK content] is better distributed and we have different programming Australia is somewhere in the middle It varies by market, ”she says

Harrison added that « the more markets you launch, the more scale you will have » which will give you « more opportunities to enter into multi-territory agreements »

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BritBox

World News – GB – BritBox « performs well » as it ramps up driving of originals and looks to international expansion



SOURCE: https://www.w24news.com/news/world-news-gb-britbox-performs-well-as-it-ramps-up-original-drive-and-looks-to-international-expansion/?remotepost=357477

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