Ancine, Brazil’s federal film/TV agency, has given clearance to international pay TV operator SPI International to enter the still fast-growing Brazilian pay TV market.
Authorization extends to nine themed niche SPI Intl. channels, including FightBox HD, which features MMA, WKF, Grand Sumo Tournament and other tourneys; extreme sports service Fast&FunBox; FashionBo, DocuBox HD and FilmBox Arthouse.
Also cleared are music-themed 360TuneBox; Madscreenbox, billed as game lovers’ first interactive 4K channel; and Erox and Eroxxx for erotic movies.
Based out of New York, Warsaw and Istanbul, parent company SPI Intl. owns the publically traded Kino Polska TV in Poland and a Turkish subsid. Its flagship premium pay TV FilmBox movie channel airs in pay TV channels in Central and Eastern Europe in Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, Hungary and Bulgaria but has worldwide rights to its themed channels and offices in New York, Poland, Istanbul, Paris, Amsterdam, Brazil, Germany, Budapest, Tel Aviv, Dubai, Hong Kong and Africa.
SPI Intl. already operates in Brazil through its worldwide app FilmBox Live, a multiscreen VOD streaming service featuring movies, sports, fashion, documentaries and live-streaming.
Following clearance, it is now in negotiation with Brazilian pay TV operators for carriage deals that would incorporate niche channels into their linear offerings, said Thiva Froes de Souza, SPI director Brazil.
Feevee multi-channel operator partners in Brazil can be cable, DTH or IPTV. Pay TV sector competition in Brazil is fierce. Ancine listed 220 pay TV channels last year, of which over half – 129 as of August – are foreign, and very largely Hollywood owned. That said, with services attractively priced and sometimes rolled into larger telco packages, Latin America’s pay TV market is still booming. According to a mid-February report by Business Bureau, despite piracy and economic slowdown, Brazil’s pay TV homes grew a year-on-year 6% to 27.3 million in 2014. Pay TV penetration will reach 58% and 39 million clients in 2019, predicted BB analyst Veronica Bianchini. Accumulated annual subscriber growth rate from 2015 to 2019 will run at 7.3%, per BB.