German Kids Channel Super RTL Takes on Netflix With Online Offering

Courtesy of Netflix
The new service will have exclusive German rights to DreamWorks Animation series such as 'Dragons: Riders of Berk'

The network, a joint venture between Disney and European broadcaster RTL Group, has launched a stand-alone SVOD platform for younger viewers.

For its 20th anniversary, German kids network Super RTL is launching is own, stand-alone SVOD platform, Kividoo, to compete against the likes of Netflix in Germany. 

Unlike Netflix, or similar SVOD platforms like Amazon Prime, Kividoo will feature kids-only programming, with no additional parent security systems required to prevent inappropriate viewing. 

The initial SVOD library will include more than 3,500 episodes, including DreamWorks Animation series such as Dragons: Riders of Berk, The Adventures of Puss in Boots and All Hail King Julian. The later two are Netflix shows in the U.S. but all come under Super RTL's output deal with DreamWorks Animation. Super RTL, launched on April 28th, 1995, is Europe's largest commercial children's channel.

In addition to the DreamWorks Animation catalog, the new Kividoo service will also offer up on-demand kids classics from third-party providers, including the German version of Sesame Street and BBC stop-motion cartoon Bob the Builder.

Super RTL is a 50-50 joint venture between Walt Disney and Bertelsmann-controlled TV giant RTL Group.

“Young kids are changing, have changed, their viewing habits — to online, to mobile,” says Super RTL CEO Claude Schmit. “We see ourselves nowadays as a video platform, not (solely) a TV platform anymore.”

At $6.40 a month, Kividoo will be substantially cheaper than Netflix, whose entry package in Germany retails for $8.50. 

“To be honest, we don’t know what will happen. The SVOD market is still very new in Germany and no one, not Netflix, not anyone, is making money yet,” Schmit says. “We have the great advantage that, for now, we don’t need to make money with SVOD. We are earning enough with classic TV to compensate for the startup losses." 

Twitter: @scottroxborough