Potential Netflix Rival Coming to Australia

CBS original The Good Fight airs on SBS. Picture credit: Twitter / @SBSOnDemand

CBS Corporation will be bringing its CBS All Access streaming service to Australia, as part of the company’s deal to buy Network Ten.

CBS, America’s biggest television network, announced earlier this month that it was gearing up to expand its digital subscription video on-demand service internationally.

While its sights were set on Canada for 2018, an expansion to the Australian market is the media giant’s latest announcement, after agreeing to acquire Australia’s financially troubled broadcaster Network Ten.

The American company announced last Monday it’s set to buy Network Ten, which has been in voluntary administration since June this year.

While CBS All Access targets a slightly older audience, it has been reported to be Netflix’s upcoming rival in the United States.

CBS Chairman and CEO Leslie Moonves says CBS’ subscription services “continue to grow beyond expectations” and are “on track to surpass a combined four million subscribers by the end of 2017”.

CBS All Access is just beginning to make its mark with original programming, a strategy Netflix and Amazon have both invested billions into.

Its first scripted original drama series, The Good Fight, a spin-off of the popular series The Good Wife currently airs in Australia on SBS.

The CBS original tells the story of young lawyer Maia Rindell, one year on from the final broadcast episode of The Good Wife.

The service also picked up its first original comedy in August, No Activity, courtesy of Will Ferrell, Adam McKay and Funny Or Die.

The show is based on the Australian series of the same name produced by Jungle and broadcast by Stan.

Other new CBS All Access programs include S.W.A.T. staring Shemar Moore from Criminal Minds and Young Sheldon, a prequel to The Big Bang Theory.

It is uncertain whether the Nine Network, which currently broadcast The Big Bang Theory, or Network Ten will get the rights to the prequel.

Browse the full list of shows here.

Limited movies are also available on the CBS All Access service.

US subscribers pay $5.99 USD a month or $9.99 USD for an ad-free service.

With similar prices, Netflix costs US subscribers $7.99 USD a month for one standard-definition stream (one person), $9.99 USD for two HD streams and $11.99 USD for four HD streams.

In addition to Network Ten, CBS will also take over the digital platform TENPLAY, channel ONE and channel ELEVEN, which it already owns a 33 per cent stake in.

“Network Ten and CBS have enjoyed a close working relationship for nearly two decades, and now CBS will continue to provide Network Ten with access to the very best in U.S. content,” said Ms Moonves.

“This acquisition not only presents CBS with considerable broadcasting opportunities in Australia, but also allows for further multi-platform distribution and growth.”

The transaction will be completed in accordance with the Australian voluntary administration process and is subject to the approval of the Foreign Investment Review Board.

Administrator Jarrod Villani says CBS and administrators “will work closely together to ensure that operations continue uninterrupted while the transaction is finalised”.







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