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Canal+ Group is betting on a surge of DTT take-up in Africa and the emergence of a middle-class to initiate the launch of Easy TV, a low-cost pay DTT offer, in February.
Composed of 30 popular channels, Easy TV will initially launch in Brazzaville, Congo, before being rolled out across the whole country and into other French-speaking African territories. The pay-model is also being used for the upcoming SVoD mobile offer Canal+ is preparing with Nigerian start-up iROKO.tv. It is scheduled for a summer launch across French-speaking countries and will feature content from Thema’s Nollywood channels, Canal+’s A+ and acquisitions.
At a press conference in Paris, Canal+ Group claimed that Africa was one of the most rapidly expanding regions for its international development.
Jacques Dupuy, Canal+ Overseas CEO, said the number of African subscribers to Canal+ pay-TV offers now reached 2 million, a figure that has doubled within two years. In Africa, Canal+ operates a bouquet of 150 channels, either local, international or premium channels, like A+ that launched in 2014. Globally, Canal+ claims 5.5 million subscribers abroad.
“The group has openned ten subsidiaries on the African continent and is strongly investing in French-speaking content either in co-productions or pre-acquisitions,” Dupuy added.
Targeting Africa too, A+, whose grid is made of movies, African TV series (50 per cent) and entertainment, is set to roll out in overseas territories and Metropolitan France on February 9th. It will be part of the Canalsat €4 African option along with channel Nollywood TV but also included in the Grand Canalsat and Tout Canalsat packages.
“We want to show outside Africa, that French-speaking African content are at the same level as English-speaking African audiovisual production,” stressed A+ MD Damiano Malchiodi.