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South Africa Launches on Show Tracker


Jack Thomas Manager

Show Tracker today announced the expansion of the global territories it monitors, adding both South Africa and South Korea to its database. This significant expansion will ensure users have a comprehensive view of the global distribution TV market across 19 international markets.

Focusing in on South Africa for now, while we are still relatively early into the 2021/22 season most of the early titles to debut this season have debuted on Multichoice owned services, namely Pay TV channel M-Net and SVOD service Showmax.

Showmax has a huge presence both in Africa and internationally. While most of its versions outside of Africa near-exclusively air content primarily aimed at African expat audiences, within Africa the SVOD is a major buyer of US and UK content.

Acorn TV launched in South Africa in 2018 and is responsible for the only TV premiere of the 2021/22 season so far to be vertically integrated. ‘The Madam Blanc Mysteries’ is distributed by Acorn Media Intl., where they have been favouring their own SVOD in most territories it is available in. BritBox launched earlier this year in August, an early step in the service’s planned expansion into 25 markets, increasing the opportunity for BBC and ITV to vertically integrate their TV shows as well.

Many US Studio SVODs are as of yet not available in the market so until we see more major launches we expect to see lower levels of vertical integration compared to other Show Tracker markets where it is becoming the norm.

Disney+ will launch in South Africa next year, with it likely to follow the precedent set by the SVOD in other Show Tracker markets where Disney is vertically integrating virtually all of its TV series through the D2C service. There are as of yet no firm plans to launch HBO Max in South Africa either, like many other markets existing volume deals are holding back any potential launch of the SVOD for WarnerMedia.

There has been little acquisition activity from Netflix or Amazon in South Africa so far this season, with Netflix in particular acquiring less TV shows globally over the past few years to instead focus on Digital Original production. Multichoice will likely keep a firm lead throughout the 2021/22 season in terms of US and UK TV premieres, remaining a key buyer for people looking to sell into South Africa. The launch of Disney+ will likely disrupt this lead in terms of sheer volume of content available and will turn the streaming wars in South Africa into a three way fight for the top spot between Netflix, Disney+ and Multichoice’s Showmax.

Show Tracker is an essential tool for the TV industry, which monitors where TV shows are being sold around the world and the rights attached to each deal. Tracking over 1,200 TV shows and 340 different services in 19 markets, it provides a unified view of the distribution market. Show Tracker gives you data you can trust to drive your strategy forward and give you the edge in negotiations.

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