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Informa: Netflix facing greater rights competition as rivals step up

Netflix Building41-620x413Netflix will find it harder to secure premium content this year with increasing competition from incumbent pay TV operators and new OTT service operators, according to analysts.

TV and digital media specialists at TBI publisher Informa Telecoms & Media are forecasting that 2014 will be the year that “the content rights pendulum will swing away from Netflix”.

“After convincing much of Hollywood to buy into its disruptive business model in 2013, Netflix will find it harder to secure the best content this year, as traditional TV operators and new OTT entrants redouble their efforts to gain rights to key properties,” Informa noted.

Producers and distributors will encourage this activity, the media intelligence house added. “More competition means more revenues, so they have little interest in seeing Netflix become the all-conquering force some have predicted it will. If the OTT firm doesn’t play its cards right, it could end up looking less like the future of TV and more like just another TV network, albeit one that operates over the internet.”

Informa went on to predict that traditional broadcasters will increasingly look to live stream video this year with the 2014 World Cup a key event and opportunity to launch connected device-friendly video.

It noted: “Most of the [World Cup] rights are held by traditional broadcasters, so this will be their chance to strengthen their multiscreen proposition amid competition from OTT-only competitors.”