2015: StreamCo gearing up for battle in On Demand Streaming

StreamCo to turn up the heat in the VoD Market.

The entertainment space in Australia has never looked better for subscribers. In the VoD space, with speculation about Netflix plans to officially enter Australia in 2015, most major media companies are gearing up to battle it out for the control of Australian on demand streaming. Quickflix and Presto are trying to leverage their early movers’ advantage. Hoping to grab a piece of the cake before things heat up too much, Nine and Fairfax recently announced their joint venture for video-on-demand services, StreamCo.

StreamCo is expected to be launched in 2015. The technical infrastructure and setup is reported to be in the final stages. StreamCo will be independent of Fairfax’s and Nine’s existing businesses, though they will have representation on the StreamCo board. Former Nine executive Mike Sneesby is expected to head StreamCo.

Both partners have pooled in $50 million each into the venture, in part reflecting the high cost of acquiring content. Over the last few months, Nine has been leveraging it’s media power to sign on exclusive content deals for Stream Co, including many international ones which will not be available on their free to air channels. Though details of StreamCo’s subscription plans have not yet been revealed, they are supposedly targeting $10 a month unlimited, unlocked plan. This will likely also include access to other premium content on the Nine Network.

StreamCo is uniquely positioned to leverage the best of two worlds – Nine’s background in the television industry and their understanding of the Australian viewers preferences, along with Fairfax strength in subscription services and digital products. Though, it remains to be seen how StreamCo will fare against local contenders like Presto and Quickflix movie streaming and potentially against the VoD pioneer Netflix, it definitely means subscribers are in for a good time in 2015.

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