Tag Archives: BBC Studios

BritBox to launch in South Africa

BritBox, the joint-venture streaming service from BBC Studios and UK commercial broadcaster ITV, will launch in South Africa in the second half of 2021.

Paul Dempsey

The territory will be the ad-free SVoD service’s fifth worldwide, following launches in the US, Canada, UK and Australia.

Last year BritBox announced a global roll-out that would take the service into 25 new territories, bringing audiences a collection of UK shows and box sets, drama premieres and live events, as well as original commissions.

Both ITV and the BBC have an existing relationship with TV audiences in South Africa, where they used to operate linear channels ITV Choice and BBC First respectively. The launch of BritBox will enable consumers to retain access to UK content following the recent closure of both TV channels.

BritBox debuted in North America in March 2017 and announced it had surpassed 1.5 million subscribers in October 2020. It launched in the UK in November 2019, followed by Australia in November 2020.

Martin Goswami

BritBox operates as a 50/50 JV between BBC Studios, the commercial arm of the UK pubcaster, and ITV.

Martin Goswami, group strategic partnership and distribution director at ITV, said: “The launch of BritBox in South Africa is yet another step in the platform’s trajectory towards international expansion. We’re delighted to bring the service to a brand new territory and continue towards establishing BritBox as a premium VoD brand across the world.”

Paul Dempsey, president of global distribution at BBC Studios, said, “We know that South African audiences have a real connection to British television and we can’t wait to bring them even more great shows, on demand, that we know they will love.”

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BBCS creates new BBC Lifestyle feed

BBC Studios (BBCS) has announced plans to create a separate BBC Lifestyle commercial channel that will be broadcast across Sub-Saharan Africa, in countries including Nigeria, Ghana, Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya and Ethiopia.

Sarah-Jane Harling

From September 1, advertisers in those countries will be able to reach modern female audiences through the channel feed, which is available across sub-Saharan Africa on MultiChoice’s pay TV service for DStv Premium, DStv Compact Plus and DStv Compact subscribers.

Sales for the BBC Lifestyle feed will be managed by MultiChoice’s DStv media sales arm on behalf of BBCS and advertisers targeting South African and SADC audiences will be able to reach those upmarket audiences on the current BBC Lifestyle feed.

“This will enable advertisers to target client needs through a combination of traditional advertising spots and tailored creative solutions,” said BBCS in a statement.

Cookery, entertainment series and aspirational design shows on BBC Lifestyle will include Come Dine With Me South Africa, Dinner Dates, Bake Off: The Professionals and the newly commissioned First Dates South Africa, which are watched by Kenyan and Nigerian audiences.

Sarah-Jane Harling, advertising account director for Africa at BBCS, said: “This is a significant step to offer brands the opportunity to align with BBC Lifestyle’s premium global and local content and extensive reach across Sub-Saharan Africa.

“With its unique mix of entertaining programming, the channel now offers dedicated ad breaks for South Africa and Africa, and remains a very attractive environment for advertisers operating on the continent.

“It enables BBC Lifestyle to assist brands wanting to specifically reach aspirational households in South Africa as well as consumers in Sub-Saharan Africa separately.”

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Kwesé TV’s Cloete joins BBC Studios

BBC Studios (BBCS) has appointed the former MD of general entertainment pan-African pay TV business Kwesé TV to a commercial director role across South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa.

Pierre Cloete

Pierre Cloete has been named commercial director for branded services for Sub-Saharan Africa, reporting to Louise La Grange, senior VP of branded services.

Cloete joins BBCS from Kwesé where he was serving as entertainment MD when the company went into administration last month. He will start the new role on September 1 from his base in Johannesburg.

During his time at Kwesé he also served as head of Sports Digital Content and acting CEO for Kwesé Sports. Prior to that he worked as head of TV and media for Ericsson in Sub-Saharan Africa.

“The appointment of a commercial director for Sub-Saharan Africa signals our ongoing commitment to the market and a continued local presence on the ground,” said La Grange in a statement.

“Pierre has a proven track record in the African television industry and I am confident that his experience and local knowledge will put BBCS in the best position to achieve our ambitions for growth.”

Cloete said: “I am delighted to join BBCS as commercial director for branded services across sub-Saharan Africa.

“The quality of the BBC channels and its content is first class, and it is an honour to join the BBC Studios team.

“Africa is filled with amazing people that enjoy great stories and love quality content. The potential is ever increasing in Africa as more stories are being told and consumed, and I look forward to adding value to the BBCS team.”

His appointment comes shortly after BBCS restructured its Central Europe, Middle East and Africa region and also after the sudden exit of Joel Churcher, the BBC’s Africa boss, in July.

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BBC Studios strikes first DSTV deal

Blue Planet II has gone to SABC in South Africa

Networks across Africa have secured more than 300 hours of programming from BBC Studios, including the first deal of its kind with OTT service DSTV Now.

The service, from South African pay TV operator MultiChoice, has acquired a package from BBC Studios that includes an array of music and arts programming, ranging from Art of Scandinavia, Shakespeare Uncovered and Il Divo: A Musical Affair: Live in Japan.

Meanwhile, South African pubcaster SABC has added more than 80 hours of programming across natural history, factual and children’s. Shows include Blue Planet II and Planet Earth II, season 24 of Top Gear and preschool series Go Jetters.

The deal will see all shows premiering for the first time in the territory on free-to-air television.

Elsewhere, SVoD service iflix has concluded a second package deal for sub-Saharan Africa (excluding South Africa), with S1-5 of Citizen Khan, S1-8 of Hustle and Undercover all included. Iflix has also added drama duo The Aliens and The Refugees.

 

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