Netflix Inks First TV Deal in Spain

Reed Hastings Netflix - H 2015
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Reed Hastings Netflix - H 2015

A deal with Vodafone arrives one month ahead of the scheduled October launch for Netflix.

Vodafone Spain has signed a deal to integrate Netflix into its TV platform, becoming the first operator to announce a deal with the American company just one month ahead of its scheduled launch in Spain.

Vodafone Spain CEO Antonio Coimbra announced the deal on Tuesday, dispelling rumors of which telecom would be the first to snag a deal with Netflix.

Vodafone said it will deliver Netflix to VOD subscribers via an application in its decoder, meaning clients will not have to update their set-top boxes. The offer will include original content like Narcos, Daredevil, Sense8 and Bloodline. Vodafone TV subscribers will also have access to an integrated search engine on the telecom provider’s service.

Vodafone TV will offer the Netflix app on smartphones and tablets, as well.

Coimbra did not reveal how much the platform would charge for the Netflix channel, but said it would be largely discounted if it was part of a bundled Vodafone TV package. It is expected to fall $9 and $14 per month.

The move looks to bring Vodafone in competition with its rival in Spain, Telefonica’s Movistar +, which sports a muscular offering of sports and movies thanks to recently merging its library with Canal Plus Spain and intentionally beefing up its VOD product.

Telefonica controls 85 percent of the Spanish pay TV market, a situation Coimbra called “oligopoly” and said it will continue to battle legally and administratively, as well as with its commercial offer.