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TBI Weekly: Sub success for SVOD players

handmaids taleA range of stories from this week highlight that a push in original content is driving paid-for VOD subscriptions higher than ever as 2017’s year-end results pile in.

Last year, subscriptions to the dominant SVOD players Netflix and Amazon continued to grow in various territories alongside lesser-known and more localised platforms.

BARB, the UK ratings analysis company, showed that over 9.5 million households in the UK have at least one SVOD subscription in the last quarter of 2017. That equals 24% growth year-on-year.

Netflix owns 7.5 million of these subscriptions. Despite adding new subscribers at a slower rate than its rivals in the territory, it still dominates by far as a service.

Amazon saw marked growth in the region, up by 53% in the same quarter. Sky’s localised streamer Now TV saw the biggest take up in the region with 70% growth.

The BBC’s iPlayer also enjoyed a record week over Christmas, with 69.2 million requests for its programming made between 25-31 December, compared to 58.6 million in 2016. It’s an “unprecedented” figure, according to BBC director of content Charlotte Moore.

The news came after the BBC increased availability for popular original series such as Peaky Blinders and Line of Duty on the platform over the period.

In the US, it was reported that Hulu enjoyed a 40% increase in subscribers compared to 2016. The streamer’s on-demand library has expanded to near 1,700 titles including the award-winning drama A Handmaid’s Tale.

Hulu now has 17 million subscribers, with the streamer’s viewers coming up at a median age of 31.

The numbers indicate that SVOD success shows no signs of abating.

 

Also in the news…

Global Road Entertainment has taken international distribution rights to Channel 4 doc Avenging Evil in a co-financing deal with the British channel

Restaurant RescueAnother UK network, Channel 5, has commissioned a 4x60mins factual series from Twofour, Restaurant Rescue, which features The Hotel Inspector’s Alex Polizzi

Twofour has also sold a 20-hour package to Sky Italia, including shows such as Extreme Cake Makers and Feeding the Super Rich, with RMC Decouverte buying Impossible Railways

In Germany, ZDF Enterprises is working with Tuvalu Entertainment and executive producer Paul Johnson to create female-inspired supernatural drama One Bad Apple

Banijay Group-backed prodco WeMake has secured first-look production rights to Global Agency’s catalogue in France

Meanwhile, Global Agency’s Turkish drama Evermore has sold to the likes of Tring TV in Albania, Nova TV in Croatia and Kanal D in Romania

Gary and His DemonsBlue Ant Media’s Canadian animation producer Look Mom! Productions and has taken adult-themed toon Gary & His Demons into production for Mondo Media’s VRV channel in the US

US telco Verizon has ordered a pair of shows from Warner Bros.-owned digital studio Blue Ribbon Content, namely Golden Revenge and A New Binge

A+E Studios has signed a two-year, first-look deal with Thruline Entertainment, the US management and production firm behind shows such as Psych, Roast Battle and I Love You, America

Sony Pictures Television Networks-owned UK kids channel Tiny Pop has bought Dot. and Splash and Bubbles from The Jim Henson Company

Consolidation is afoot in the Scandi telco and pay TV sector as Com Hem agrees to sell to Tele2

Doctor Doctor : The Heart GuyUKTV has bought The Heart Guy from FremantleMedia International and will play the Australia medical series on its Drama channel

Sky One in the UK has commissioned Chalkboard TV produce touching four-part doc series My Wonderful Life

Zee Entertainment in India has bought British drama The Boy with the Top Knot from Endemol Shine International

British pay TV channel CBS Reality is getting an exclusive series from Emporium Productions, Donal McIntyre’s Murder Files

Irish network TV3 will soon become Virgin Media Television following a rebranding exercise

France’s APAC Kids will sell LA-based Genius Brands International‘s preschool show Rainbow Rangers in EMEA

Independent distributor All3media International has struck two new deals in Latin America for Two Brothers Pictures’ critically-acclaimed thriller Liar

The week’s top TBI stories: