After acquiring a measure of control of Lionsgate through the major studio's purchase of premium cable network Starz Thursday, John Malone will keep looking for deals for media companies in need of scale amid a consolidating pay-TV business, analysts say.
The long-rumored merger between Lionsgate and Starz has finally come to fruition, with the Canadian-American movie studio buying the premium cable network for a cash and stock sum totaling $4.4 billion.
Starz CEO Chris Albrecht said that Starz and the newly rebranded Starz Encore channels are doing well and that Amazon is having a lot of success selling the recently launched Starz standalone OTT product.
BOSTON-- Premium cable provider Starz is keen to offer HDR content to its viewers, said Ray Milius, the company's EVP of programming and operations, here on the sidelines of the INTX show. However, he declined to provide any kind of a timeframe for that launch because of the many issues he said continue to hinder HDR technology.
It was an active first quarter for SVOD launches, with NBCUniversal hoisting comedy platform Seeso, Sony expanding and improving on its PlayStation Vue live-streaming service, and Starz finally following chief rivals HBO and Showtime into the direct-to-consumer market.
Comcast has confirmed that it won't allow its subscribers to perform TV Everywhere authentication with the new Starz streaming app.
No. 2 premium cable network Starz will launch an $8.99 direct-to-consumer service, usable on Apple and Google mobile and OTT devices, the company said.
As Starz CEO Chris Albrecht hinted during the company's fourth quarter earnings call in February, Starz is creating a new master brand by changing the name of Encore to Starz Encore starting April 5.
After previously insisting that it has had no discussions about going direct-to-consumer, Starz now said it is about to complete agreements to distribute its offerings outside the pay-TV ecosystem.
According to a fiery new lawsuit by a former employee, Starz allegedly asked DirecTV, Comcast and Liberty Media to "fabricate revenue and subscriber information" and to engage in other "malicious, fraudulent and/or oppressive" conduct.