Television Business International

Disney to launch branded channel on Netflix rival

Digital-headerDisney StudiosDisney, fresh from pulling out of its distribution agreement with Netflix, has signed up to provide a branded channel on the streaming video outfit’s Asian rival Iflix.

Disney has struck a wide-ranging deal with the Malaysia-based subscription video-on-demand company that will see it provide a branded channel on Iflix’s platform featuring Marvel and Pixar movies as well as Disney shows.

Iflix said the deal would mark the debut of a new ‘channels’ feature on its service.

The agreement will initially bring Marvel Studios movies including Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Thor: The Dark World and Iron Man 3, Pixar Animation films such as Monsters Inc, Monsters University, Up and Wall-E, and Disney shows including Frozen, Wreck-It Ralph, Cars, Lilo & Stitch, The Jungle Book and Cinderella to Iflix users.

Further titles including Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Captain America: Civil War, The Jungle Book, Tangled, Finding Dory, Finding Nemo and The Incredibles! will arrive next year.

In addition to Disney kids content such as Sofia the First and Star Wars Rebels, the deal will also extend to ABC Studios shows such as Scandal, Grey’s Anatomy, Criminal Minds, Devious Maids and Marvel Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Iflix’s deal with Disney, in addition to covering content distribution and early window movierights, will also see the pair collaborate around a project with Disney’s MCN arm Maker Studios. This will revolve around the creation of content to be released as an exclusive Iflix original.

“Disney has a story for every age. Iflix is committed to providing the best in entertainment from around the world and this SVOD partnership in the region will bring Disney brands and premium titles to our members across the region. At Iflix, we have committed to offering the best content available to our subscribers, this new partnership with Disney is key to delivering on that promise,” said Sean Carey, Iflix Group’s chief content officer.

“We are pleased to partner with Iflix to bring Disney content even closer to fans in south-east Asia. Through the extensive library of contentavailable on the new Channels feature, fans of all ages will have a unique access to their favorite stories and characters anytime they want”, said Amit Malhotra, general manager, media networks, The Walt Disney Company Southeast Asia.

The agreement with Iflix comes two weeks after Disney announced that it was pulling all its movies from Netflix to launch its own branded SVOD service when the pair’s agreement expires in 2019.

Disney said it would make its future theatrical releases, original and library programming available via a new, as yet unnamed service, initially to launch in the US alongside a branded ESPN sports SVOD service.

Iflix is currently available in 20 territories across Asia, the Middle East and North Africa, and is set to launch in sub-Saharan Africa in the next few weeks.