RTL Nederland is preparing for a battle with Netflix by taking a a majority share in the Dutch VOD service Videoland.
RTL has announced that the broadcaster has acquired 65% in The Entertainment Group (TEG), the company that owns and operates the on demand activities of Videoland. TEG will continue to operate independently in the video on demand market.
Videoland and its sister company MovieMax, are offering on-demand servcie on online portals as well as on smart TVs from Philips (Videoland) and Samsung (MovieMax). The company is also the sole provider of premium VOD content on the KPN IPTV service.
Netflix is expected to launch its S-VOD service in September of this year and witht he acquisition of Videoland RTL is solidifying its market position on the market. Other players on the VOD scene in The Netherlands include Pathe Thuis (owned by the Patrher cinemas), SBS Broadcasting’s Veamer portal and Ximon, which specialises in Dutch TV and movie content.
Bert Habets, CEO RTL Netherlands, said in a statement: “This acquisition is a logical next step in the development of our on demand TV offering. RTL is now in the midst of a digital transformation. The b-to-b earnings driven by ads for RTL remains the main source of income. At the same time we see the b-to-c with payment earnings grow faster. Our VOD and RTL Ventures activities are good examples of this development. We also see that consumers are becoming more willing to pay for the right [content] offer. With this acquisition, we perfectly play along witht his development.”
Arno Otto, MD Digital RTL Netherlands, added: “Videoland is a pay-per-view service. This autumn we will introduce the first all-you-can-watch subscription in the Netherlands, where consumers get unlimited access to movies, from imported premium TV series to the best Dutch productions, for a fixed monthly fee. Our intensive investments in Dutch film rights and the exploitation of rights of our Dutch and international TV series and programmes now directly benefit the consumer. Together with our VOD platform RTL XL this acquisition we have an unmatched offer on the Dutch market. ”
Co Mast, CEO, The Entertainment Group, said: “Videoland is the No. 1 player in the market and with the power of RTL we can solidify this base. We are already strongly associated with home consumption and we will now enrich the library of Videoland, as the largest in the Netherlands, with all RTL TV successes and their rich movie offer.”
The new on-demand video service with the RTL content will be available in September 2013 through Videoland.com. The subscription model will follow this fall. At the moment, Videoland sells single titles for €4.99 a pop.