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France’s Canal Plus Launches New OTT Service Dedicated to Series

French pay-TV group Canal Plus is launching Canal Plus Series, an OTT channel dedicated to scripted shows, which will bow Tuesday with a slightly cheaper subscription fee than Netflix’s in France.

The new OTT service will showcase a mix of Canal Plus original series such as “Spiral,” “Versailles” and the anticipated contemporary half-hour “Vernon Subutex,” and high-profile international shows such as “Killing Eve” and “My Brilliant Friend.” Other series such as “Deadly Class” and the new season of “Gomorra” will also be exclusively available on Canal Plus Series in France

Canal Plus Series’ slate will boast recent Showtime, FX and Studiocanal productions, notably “Billions,” “What We Do in the Shadows” and “The Lawyer,” respectively. Some flagship series such as “”24,” “Dexter” and “The X-Files” will be part of the channel’s offer as well.

As it aims to lure younger demographics, Canal Plus Series will be available as a standalone, cancel-anytime channel, with a subscription fee of €6.99 ($7.85) per month. It won’t require an existing subscription to other Canal Plus channels. Netflix’s subscription fee is €7.99 (about $9).

Although Canal Plus Series will first be distributed on the OTT service My Canal, the pay-TV groups aims at rolling it out on all platforms carrying Canal Plus offers at some point.

Canal Plus Group CEO Maxime Saada said the launch of Canal Plus Series marked a “new stage in the transformation of our offers initiated two years ago.” He was referring to the introduction of lower-priced packages as part of its push to expand its subscriber base and turn around its mounting losses. Prior to those strategic changes, which Saada spearheaded, Canal Plus’ subscription was set at €40 (about $45) per month.

Saada said Canal Plus was looking to tap into the industry’s “transformation in terms of use to better address new customers’ habits,” as well as take advantage of “digital transformation to reach new audiences, in France and soon internationally.”

Saada described myCanal as “a unique live and on-demand platform with sports, French and Hollywood movies just a few months after theatrical release, series, documentaries, etc.”

Frank Cadoret, Canal Plus Group’s deputy general manager, said the new Canal Plus Series “was designed to give the taste of Canal Plus to younger audiences through one of its most recognized content [genres]: series.”

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