Hong Kong’s telecoms giant PCCW has raised $110 million from a collection of blue chip investors for its over the top streaming ventures.
PCCW OTT operates Internet media and entertainment services in 24 territories, with video streaming services under the Viu and Vuclip brands, and music streaming service under the MOOV brand. PCCW Media acquired Vuclip in 2015.
The new backers are Chinese investment group Hony Capital, iPhone maker Foxconn, and Singapore sovereign wealth fund Temasek. The trio are taking an 18% stake in PCCW International OTT, giving it an implied valuation of $611 million. The companies also win the right to buy further preference shares, which give them priority if and when the unit launches on the stock market via an IPO.
PCCW Media, which holds the majority stake, indicates that that could be within the next five years. PCCW Media operates Hong Kong’s leading pay-TV service NowTV.
Operating with both ad-supported and subscription models, and delivering mostly Asian content, Viu had over 12 million monthly active users as of June 2017. It is operational in 15 territories including Hong Kong, Singapore, India, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
“Our focus on content, pricing and technology that are locally relevant in various markets, together with our fast tracked rollout across the region, has enabled Viu to become a leading OTT video service in Asia,” said Janice Lee, MD of PCCW Media. “These (partners) will support our current plans and strengthen our leading position in the market with the introduction of more locally relevant and original content, and technology to support innovative product development.”
“Foxconn is transforming to be a technology service provider (with activities ranging) from content creation to network transmission,” said Fang Ming Lu, executive VP of Foxconn.