Showmax to ramp up original content after MultiChoice listing

MultiChoice Group is set to list on the JSE on 27 February, marking its move to a standalone entertainment company.

Naspers announced late in 2018 that it would list its “Video Entertainment” business separately, which would be named MultiChoice Group and will include MultiChoice South Africa, MultiChoice Africa, Showmax Africa, and Irdeto.

Video Entertainment CEO Imtiaz Patel said at the time: “Listing and unbundling MultiChoice Group is intended to create a leading entertainment business listed on the JSE that is profitable and cash generative. We offer an unmatched selection of local and original content, as well as a world-class sports offering.”

Growth for Showmax

One of the key elements in MultiChoice Group is Showmax, South Africa’s Netflix competitor.

Third-party data shows that Showmax and Netflix are are the joint leaders in the South African streaming scene, and both have seen growth since local launch.

Showmax told MyBroadband that since its inception – it launched in South Africa in August 2015 – is has seen consecutive years of year-on-year subscriber growth.

With its parent company set to list on the JSE and focus on leading the entertainment scene in Africa, Showmax is likely to benefit in terms of a push for more subscribers and an increased amount of original content.

The company stated that while it is difficult to make predictions about the potential impact on its subscriber base, it confirmed it is ramping up it content offering.

“We launched our first Showmax Original drama – The Girl From St Agnes – earlier this month, which was only our second overall Showmax Original, and we’re picking the pace up from there with our third original – Trippin With Skhumba – going live later this month. And there’s more in the pipeline for later this year,” said Showmax.

“On top of that we’ve been adding more first and exclusive shows, and more ‘Express from the US’ content (Vikings, Siren, The Magicians). We’re also running collaborations like the Comedy Central Roast of AKA – the uncensored version will be hitting Showmax on 12 March.”

Device usage

Showmax also shared its subscriber device usage statistics with MyBroadband, with web browsers, mobile apps, and “lean-back” versions sharing the spoils.

“The overall app usage split has remained pretty steady at around one-third web browsers, one-third mobile, and one-third lean-back – smart TVs, media players, game consoles.”

“Android continues to lead mobile viewing, with roughly two-thirds of all mobile views on Android, versus one-third on iOS.”

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Showmax to ramp up original content after MultiChoice listing