JioCinema: Warner deal will boost Reliance's streaming plans

JioCinema: Warner deal will boost Reliance's streaming plans 

Mukesh Ambani likely to focus on pricing local content following a deal with Warner Bros

Jio Cinema App, HBO, Warner Bros

Following a deal with Warner Bros, Mukesh Ambani's video streaming company, which aims to compete with Netflix and Disney in India, is likely to concentrate on pricing and local content. According to the content agreement announced on Thursday, well-known shows from HBO and Warner Bros (WBD.O), including Harry Potter and Succession, would be accessible starting next month on the JioCinema platform, which Ambani's Viacom18 has been promoting for weeks by providing well-known IPL cricket events for free. 

According to a source in the business, internal discussions on JioCinema's pricing approach are still ongoing, although Ambani has a history of undercutting competitors in the price-sensitive Indian market. He made his Jio telecom business India's leading provider in 2016 by providing mobile data at no cost. To compete with Coca-Cola (KO.N) and Nestle, he is using a similar marketing approach to promote his consumer goods. 

A request for comment was not immediately answered by Viacom18, the broadcast business of Ambani's Reliance Industries (RELI.NS). Additionally, Paramount Global (PARA.O) and Bodhi Tree, a partnership between James Murdoch and a former top Disney executive named Uday Shankar, are shareholders in the company. 

Industry leaders and media analysts claim that the Warner agreement will strengthen Viacom18's already announced efforts to "disrupt and innovate" the market and help draw in India's elite English-speaking population. 

JioCinema's current free offerings are primarily comprised of old Hindi and regional language films, in contrast to Netflix and other competitors that brag of having content made specifically for the Indian market. In terms of sports, it currently owns IPL cricket streaming rights till 2027, and in March it acquired exclusive rights for the MotoGP in India. 


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