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Starz Might Be Next in Line for an OTT Option in the U.S.

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Earlier this month, premium movie channel Starz announced that it was looking into launching international OTT offerings, and in an earnings call yesterday added that it could well bring such an offering to the U.S., as well.

Starz made headlines in the middle of this month when the Financial Times reported that it was considering an over-the-top offering for regions such as the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America, and was working with Sweden's Parsifal Entertainment on the launch.

On yesterday's third-quarter earnings call, Chris Albrecht, CEO of Starz, spoke in favor of OTT offerings both abroad and in the U.S. An OTT offering that combines original Starz series plus licensed movies and TV shows will come to some as-yet-unnamed international regions next year, and may come to the United States, as well. An OTT offering won't cannibalize the existing business, he believes, and gives the company an opportunity to innovate.

“There is significant value in paid premium channels that is being constrained by current MVPD bundling,” Variety quoted Albrecht as saying.

Starz has already been out front in using online video to attract new audiences. At the 2014 Streaming Media East conference, David Katz, vice president of digital media for Starz, explained that his company uses YouTube to promote existing series and develop new ideas.  

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