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ITV-backed Cirkus launches new SVOD service

Curio_780ITV-backed Cirkus is launching Curio, a new SVOD service programmed with factual programming, TBI has learned.

Cirkus runs branded streaming services for pay TV operators and has partnered with several platforms in the Nordics. To date it has offered a ‘best of British’ offering, with a 600-hour line-up of drama from international distributors including ITV Studios, Endemol Shine International and BBC Worldwide.

Curio will sit alongside Cirkus and focus on documentary programming. Company founders Hugh Williams (below right) and Mark Bradford (below left) told TBI that the new service will launch within months, with discussions with operators underway.

hugh-williamsDSC03778The Cirkus chiefs say there is room for a streaming service carrying quality docs and factual programming as the likes of Discovery and Nat Geo have moved their focus from classic factual to advertiser-friendly fact-ent and entertainment.

Williams told TBI: “The Discoverys and the Nat Geos are chasing ratings because of the pressure on linear pay TV channels. They have vacated a space for customers who wants to watch intelligent documentary, who are being starved of this stuff.”

Mark BradfordCurio will have a couple of hundred hours of full-length docs at launch, with specific titles announced soon. The first roll outs are expected to be in the Nordics.

UK broadcaster ITV took a minority stake in Cirkus last year and is backing its growth plans.

The on-demand service launched in Sweden in 2013 after agreeing a distribution deal with Swedish cable operator Com Hem. It has since launched in Norway and Finland.

As well as the new factual offering, the company will expand into other European markets in 2016, with Germany one priority, Wlliams and Bradford said.

The Cirkus founders tell TBI about the plans for Curio and the expansion of Cirkus in the latest issue of TBI Magazine. The full article can be read here.

Tags: Cirkus, Curio