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HBO has revealed plans to take on Netflix and launch a stand-alone streaming service in Spain.
The service is scheduled to launch before the end of this year, giving residents in the country access to an HBO streaming service for the first time, making the premium network’s programming available without a pay-TV subscription.
HBO will now retain the exclusive rights to its shows for its streaming service and will no longer license its programming to pay-TV services in the country – a country which has high rates of broadband-only homes.
Once current licensing deals expire, HBO fans in Spain will only be able to watch its first-run programming on the new streaming service – including popular shows such as Game of Thrones and Silicon Valley.
HBO believes it can make even more money long-term by offering its own online service, Chief Executive Officer Richard Plepler said. “We follow the money,” he said in an interview. “We’re making a determination of where we think the most profits lie.”
HBO currently offers its online channel in Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark (via HBO Nordic). It launched a stand-alone online service in the US in April 2015 and a similar offering in Colombia at the end of the year, with plans to expand it across Latin America.