Sony, Warner Bros. Deepen Investment in Southeast Asian Netflix Rival HOOQ
The two-year-old streaming-video service has raised $95 million to date.
Sony and Warner Brothers have increased their investment in HOOQ, a Southeast Asian streaming-video service that competes head-to-head with Netflix and Amazon in the region.
The two studios are partners in the two-year-old joint venture with Singtel, Singapore's largest mobile phone operator. Singtel, which holds majority control of HOOQ, invested a fresh $15.5 million (SG$23.7 million) into the service, while the two studios committed a little under $5 million each.
To date, HOOQ has raised $95 million. Following the deal, Singtel now owns 65 percent of the company, and Sony and Warner have 17.5 percent each. Details of the investments were revealed in a regulatory filing issued by Singtel.
HOOQ currently operates in the Philippines, Thailand, India, Indonesia and Singapore. The service offers both monthly and weekly subscription plans, with weekly pricing running as low as $1.40 in some markets. The company says its library boasts over 35,000 hours of Hollywood, regional and original local content.
In addition to U.S. heavyweights Netflix and Amazon, both of which launched in the region last year, HOOQ faces stiff competition from fellow Southeast Asia-based streamer iFlix, which received a $45 million investment from pan-European pay TV giant Sky last March.