Saturday, February 25, 2017

BBC Worldwide for Africa sells over 800 hours of programming to Naspers' ShowMax and China's StarTimes.

In the past few months the BBC has sold over 800 hours of programming to the African pay-to-play streamer ShowMax and pay-TV operator StarTimes.

BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm of the BBC, has sold over 250 hours of content to Naspers' ShowMax, and over 200 hours to China's StarTimes, MultiChoice's biggest pay-TV rival on the African continent.

In its second deal with ShowMax, the subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) service picked up shows like Absolutely Fabulous and War and Peace. StarTimes took shows like Luther, Doctor Who and Call the Midwife.

BBC Worldwide says Africa has become one of its "most flourishing markets" with a growing demand for quality BBC programming.

MultiChoice carries several BBC Worldwide channels on its DStv pay-TV platform across Africa, with South Africa that carries all five channels – BBC First, BBC Brit, BBC Earth, BBC Lifestyle and CBeebies. 

The BBC says "appetite for BBC content has expanded rapidly".

"It's an incredibly exciting time for the television industry in Africa," says Joel Churcher, BBC Worldwide vice president and general manager for Africa.

"There's an insatiable appetite for top-tier programmes and BBC Worldwide content, in particular our drama series, are cutting are cutting through the wealth of content available and being recognised as some of the most popular shows across the continent."