MultiChoice Group, the parent company of Africa-focused entertainment brands like DStv and GOtv, has signed agreements with Netflix and Amazon to integrate their services onto the new DStv Explora decoder.
Aggregating content even more with distribution partnership agreements with two major international Subscription Video on Demand (SVOD) providers – offering more choice for our 19.5m customers… more info to follow!#AnnualResults #MultiChoice #Aggregator pic.twitter.com/PrcBbG8NEm
— MultiChoice Group (@MultiChoiceGRP) June 10, 2020
The Group’s FY20 Annual Results also state that it has “launched field trials of DStv Streaming product,” DStv Now.
DStv Now is a free app for DStv customers that allows them to watch live TV, see the full DStv guide, and enjoy Catch Up content using devices ranging from iOS and Android-based tablets and smartphones to desktop and laptop computers.
The agreement with Netflix and Amazon comes as a surprise, considering the plan was to launch DStv Now as a standalone service at the end of March 2020 after concluding external testing, as reported by Techpoint Africa in November 2019.
These deals make sense from a customer retention perspective because it means DStv’s customers can remain on the platform while accessing the content of rivals to its streaming service.
But then one must question the merits of maintaining a streaming service while partnering with rivals of the same service to provide subscription video on demand (SVoD) content on a different platform.
It should also be noted that after DStv Now launched in 2014, Showmax, an online SVoD service, was launched in 2015 and integrated into Explora.
Though Netflix doesn’t reveal its subscriber numbers for non-US countries, Techpoint Africa reported that Netflix probably had less than 50,000 subscribers in Nigeria as at Q2, 2019. This was based on Nigeria not making the top 50 and Luxembourg, occupying the 50th spot, having 52,151 subscribers; South Africa, the only African country in the top 50, ranked 41st with 152,588 subscribers.
Expectedly, the number of Nigerian subscribers will definitely have increased. And with Amazon Prime being a less expensive streaming option, it stands to reason that it has its fair share of subscribers.
Nevertheless, MultiChoice’s moves appear to be positioning the company well for customer retention and also acquisition.
It remains to be seen, however, what the costing and plans will be once the SVoD platforms’ content begin to air on DStv’s Explora.
For now, though, the MultiChoice Group looks set to have DStv Now and Showmax, as well as Netflix and Amazon Prime as its SVoD offerings.
Featured image source: capetowndstvinstallation.com
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Sub Editor at Techpoint Africa