Mexico’s ClaroVideo Dips Into Original Content Production

Mexican over-the-top streaming service ClaroVideo, a subsidiary of Carlos Slim’s telco America Movil, is developing a comedy series with Fernando Sarinana (“Ninas Mal,” “Amar te Duele”) attached to produce and direct. Titled “El Torito,” the 13-episode series will center on the misadventures of a group of bikers.

ClaroVideo, which has over a million OTT subs, has no doubt been inspired by market leader Netflix, which has already created two series in Latin America, Gaz Alazraki’s Mexican family dramedy “Club de Cuervos” and Colombian-set “Narcos,” debuting August 7 and 28 respectively, and has just ordered its first fiction series in Brazil, the futuristic drama “3%,” from Boutique Films and “City of God” cinematographer Cesar Charlone.

ClaroVideo CEO Andres Vazquez del Mercado pointed out that “Torito” is not as ambitious as the mega productions of Netflix but it’s a start. “El Torito” will stream exclusively on ClaroVideo in a few months.

A second more ambitious series, a drama, is slated to launch in early 2016.

Clarovideo re-launched its OTT service after Netflix entered the Latin American market in 2011. But what it’s learning from the OTT behemoth, which claims more than five million subs in the region, is that original and compelling programming is key to capturing – and sustaining – auds.

“Streaming video-on-demand is an ‘all you can eat’ business; subscribers watch as much content they want for one price. It’s a voracious beast with an ever-increasing appetite for content,” says OTT serial entrepreneur Steve Symonds of Chicago-based Symonds Associates.

Research company Dataxis forecasts that Latin American VOD OTT revenues will rise to $3.17 billion in 2018. Brazil and Mexico will remain the largest markets – with Brazil capturing 35.3% of total revenues and Mexico 34.6%.

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