Formed only in 2011, JTBC has rapidly become one of Korea’s most influential broadcasters, with a mix of news, creative dramas and entertainment shows. Its hit dramas include “SKY Castle,” “Misty,” and “Something in the Rain.”
The investment in Iflix is made through the company’s affiliate JTBC Content Hub, which spans sales and production. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Earlier this month, Iflix announced another strategic investment from Japan’s Yoshimoto Kogyo. Iflix has previously has investment from European satellite broadcaster Sky ($45 million in 2016). Publicly disclosed funding rounds in March 2017 brought in $90 million and Liberty Global, while a $133 round in August 2017 brought in Hearst Entertainment.
Iflix argues that Korean drama content has been key to user acquisitions and engagement, in multiple territories. Through the alliance, Iflix will distribute JTBC’s premium content across Asia. That may lead to further collaborations that include co-productions in iflix markets.
JTBC’s most popular content will be featured on Iflix for free, including beloved South Korean dramas “Welcome to Waikiki 2” and “The Wind Blows,” as well as top variety shows “Men on a Mission” and “Chef and My Fridge,” one month after their Korean broadcasts.
In addition to premium catch-up TV, JTBC will also contribute 500 hours of library content, including dramas “SKY Castle,” “Cleaning with Passion Now,” “ID: Gangnam Beauty” and “Ms. Hammuribi.” These will be available to all iflix viewers for free.
“With its fast-growing economy and attractive demographics, Southeast Asia has always been one of the most important regions to JTBC. Through iflix, we hope more and more SEA people enjoy,” said Jung Kyungmoon Jung, CEO of JTBC Content Hub.