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Viasat launches SVOD; MTG buys into Russia

Modern Times Group (MTG)-owned Viasat Broadcasting has launched a subscription video-on-demand service on its Viasat On Demand Internet portal in Sweden, Denmark and Norway. The launch of the service comes on the same day Viasat parent group MTG bought into Russian pay TV operator Raduga.

The SVOD service will offer live sports events, TV shows and access to 200 feature film titles at any given time. Content is supplied by major US studios, leading TV channels and premium sports rights holders, with prices for a variety of packages ranging from SEK49 to SEK199 (US$6.59 to US$26.80) a month for the Total package.

Viasat is also offering an Entertainment package with series including Two and a Half Men, Friends, ER, Supernatural and Smallville, a Documentary package and a Sports package including live coverage of UEFA Champions League football, ATP and Davis Cup tennis, the NHL and HockeyAllsvenskan ice hockey leagues, and motor racing’s Formula One World Championship and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. A Movie package features current titles including Hancock, You Don’t Mess with the Zohan and The Kite Runner, as well as Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Ocean’s Eleven and Kill Bill.

Separately, MTG has acquired a 50% stake in Russian DTH pay TV service provider Raduga TV (Rainbow TV). MTG has purchased a 50% stake in Raduga Holdings from Russia’s Continental Media for an undisclosed sum. Raduga is the sole owner of DaoGeoCom, which operates Raduga TV.

Raduga TV was launched in February last year and had 70,000 active subscribers at the end of the year, offering a package of over 50 local and international channels including Discovery Channel Russia, Eurosport Russia, National Geographic and Jetix for RUB300 (US$9.83) a month.

The Raduga package also includes MTG’s Viasat History, Viasat Explorer, TV1000 Russian Kino, TV1000 East and TV1000 Action East.  Also present are local free-to-air channels CTC, Domashny and DTV, operated by CTC Media, in which MTG has a 39.4% stake.