Google Executive Alexandar Vassilev to Head up German Netflix Competitor 7TV

The German streaming service offers up live sports from Discovery's Eurosport.

The former product manager for Google Search will run the direct-to-consumer streaming service, a joint venture between Discovery Communications and German TV giant ProSiebenSat.1.

Former Google executive Alexandar Vassilev has been tapped to run 7TV, the ambitious German streaming service set up as a joint venture between Discovery Communications and local broadcasting group ProSiebenSat.1.

Vassilev, who held several management positions at Google, YouTube and DoubleClick, most recently as product manager for Google Search, will take over as CEO of 7TV immediately.

7TV bundles together offerings from the ProSiebenSat.1 and Discovery brands, as well as acquired and in-house TV series and films from German networks ProSieben, Sat.1 and Kabel 1, plus sports streaming from Discovery subsidiary Eurosport. The app and digital platform are a direct move to compete with streaming giants Netflix and Amazon prime in Europe's largest TV market.

“By bringing together two major media brands, strong content and all the potential of this new service, my ambition is to build an unrivaled direct-to-consumer brand,” Vassilev said in a statement.

7TV is being carefully watched by the industry to see if old media groups Discovery and ProSieben can successfully leverage their large local audiences and content libraries to establish an online audience and, more importantly, a successful business model to compete with Netflix and other competitors.