OSN bulks up OTT with new channels

Middle East pay TV provider OSN has added three new linear channels to its OTT TV service OSN Play and, separately, has claimed a 60% increase in subscriber registrations and a fourfold increase in viewership for the platform.

OSN has added BSkyB’s news channel Sky News, AMC Networks-owned kids channel JimJam and Scripps Networks’ Food Network to the service. The three channels join existing live services OSN Sports 1, OSN Sports 2, OSN Sports Cricket and Disney Jr.

OSN said OSN Play has seen a 400% increase in viewership year-on-year along with a 60% increase in subscriber registrations. In addition to linear channels, the service offer on-demand access to TV box sets including Games of Thrones, Hareem Al Sultan, and House of Cards, as well as movies from around the world. The service features interfaces in both English and Arabic.

“OSN Play has truly elevated the digital television sector by bringing value-added services that were never explored in this region,” said Emad Morcos, senior VP, business development and digital at OSN.

“From the catch-up option to the flexibility and convenience available to subscribers, OSN Play is undoubtedly one of the network’s most popular additions. We will continue to expand the offering and further enhance the user experience.”

UK-based research group Ovum has estimated that OSN’s subscriber base will increase from about 641,000 today to 2.1 million over the next five years.

The group’s majority owner Kuwait Projects Company (Kipco) this week rejected a US$3.2 billion offer for its stake in OSN, reportedly from US private equity group Hellman & Friedman.

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