×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Orange Partners With Canal Plus on New Package, Lays Ground for New Content Division

PARIS – Faced with rising competition from Altice in France, leading telco Orange and pay-TV group Canal Plus are joining forces to launch Canal + Essentiel, a new package making Canal Plus core channels available to Orange’s fiber customers.

Set to kick off in a few months, Canal + Essentiel will be accessible to Orange Fiber customers “without commitment and at a competitive price.” For the first time, Orange will handle subscriptions directly for the package. The partnership follows Canal Plus’ previous carriage deal with Orange for Famille by Canal, which was launched in 2016.

The new initiative was unveiled during a news conference Tuesday hosted by Stéphane Richard, chairman and CEO of Orange, who laid the ground for Orange Content, a newly created umbrella division that groups together all of Orange’s entertainment businesses.

“Orange Content aims to guarantee the richness of our offer in France and abroad and to give more visibility and consistency to our offers in the field of content,” said Richard. “Since its launch in 2008, OCS has pursued an intensive partnership policy and it supports the entire film industry, from production to distribution.”

The big news of the press conference was the group’s decision to bank on drama series. Richard said Orange will invest 100 million euros in original French and international TV shows via co-production over five years.

Richard said that in 2013, OCS committed to investing 179 million euros ($205 million) in French and European films through 2018.

As previously announced during the Cannes Film Festival, Orange Content will be headed by David Kessler, who serves as director, and Serge Laroye, who serves as deputy director of the new division. Kicking off on Sept. 1, Orange Content will have five key roles: trends analysis, rights acquisitions, management and development of a production/publishing unit, R&D for new formats, and monitoring content turnover wherever Orange operates.

Aiming to become a vertically integrated company such as Gaumont, Studiocanal and TF1 Studio, Orange Studio is also diving into international sales and direct distribution, thanks to its deal with UGC Images, a subsidiary of Europe’s second-biggest cinema circuit.

Orange said it extended that pact with UGC Images to allow OCS to gains first-window rights to UGC Images’ pics, notably “Gaston Lagaffe” and the sequel to “Serial (Bad) Weddings.”

Now boasting 2.5 million subscribers, OCS will showcase exclusive content from HBO, Sony Pictures, as well as mainstream French movies from UGC Images.

Orange also announced it was renewing its partnership with the Cannes Film Festival for another three years, as well as the Lumière Film Festival in Lyon, which is headed by Thierry Fremaux, artistic director of Cannes. Orange will be a partner of the Institut Lumière for the next three years.

As one of the major backers of Luc Besson’s upcoming film “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets” (pictured), Orange’s SVOD service has exclusive pay-TV rights to the film in Europe, Africa and the Middle East, and has VOD rights for France.

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • Spotify logo is presented on a

    Spotify VP Paul Vogel Talks Subscription Prices, Label Licenses, Podcasts

    The annual Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference gives representatives from major companies the opportunity to present to the investment community, and Paul Vogel, Spotify’s VP and head of financial planning & analysis, treasury and investor relations, spoke on the streaming giant’s behalf on Tuesday morning. While many of his comments were statements frequently heard in the [...]

  • Directv Now

    AT&T Sued for Allegedly Creating Bogus DirecTV Now Accounts

    A group of investors sued AT&T, alleging the telco artificially inflated subscriber counts for its DirecTV Now streaming service — including by creating fake accounts. In the federal class-action lawsuit, the plaintiffs allege that AT&T wanted to make DirecTV Now seem more successful than it actually was as another way to rationalize its $85 billion [...]

  • Streaming Battle: Disney, Apple and More

    The Battle for Eyeballs Makes for an Action-Packed Streaming Arena (Column)

    It came as no surprise last week that Disney CEO Bob Iger had resigned from the Apple board since the two companies are poised to launch competing subscription streaming services in less than two months. But Iger’s departure (announced the same day that Apple revealed its Nov. 1 launch date and $5-a-month price point) underscores [...]

  • AVOD streaming video OTT users -

    Fast-Growing Asia Video Market Awaits Arrival of Disney Plus and Apple

    Asia’s over-the-top video streaming market is growing so strongly that there is currently room for a wide variety of business models. Local companies have many of the most compelling success stories, but the global players have found plenty to chew on too, and competition is expected to increase with Disney and Apple launches starting from [...]

  • Streaming Wars Placeholder TV

    Explosion of Streaming Services Points to Price Wars on the Horizon

    With its $800 iPhones and $1,400 Hermès smart watches, Apple’s not exactly in the business of bargain-bin pricing. But the surprisingly low-priced debut of Apple TV Plus, at $4.99 per month for a family subscription, is a signal that the streaming video market of tomorrow — soon to be awash with services from Disney, WarnerMedia [...]

  • VJ1 RuPaul's Drag Race

    Pluto TV Adds Seven More Free Viacom Channels, Including One for 'RuPaul’s Drag Race'

    Viacom continues stuffing more library content into Pluto TV, its free, ad-supported internet streaming service, adding a range of African American and LGBTQ programming from VH1 and BET. On Tuesday, Pluto TV launched seven new genre channels with content from its parent, including dedicated channels for VH1’s “RuPaul’s Drag Race” — with episodes from the [...]

  • Spotify

    Spotify Dismisses Amazon’s High-Definition Audio: ‘It’s Not a Big Differentiator’

    At the moment Amazon Music launched its new high-definition audio service on Tuesday morning, which it says offers the best streaming audio fidelity available, Spotify VP and head of investor relations Paul Vogel was speaking at Goldman Sachs’ Communicopia conference in Lower Manhattan. While Tidal and Deezer have long offered a high-fidelity service and Apple [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content