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Sports entertainment powerhouse WWE has extended and expanded its relationship with African pay TV giant MultiChoice with a new TV and WWE Network rights deal that makes streaming service Showmax the new home of WWE Network in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The deal replicates WWE’s deal with Peacock/NBCUniversal in the U.S. for the region. The company has also struck similar deals in Indonesia and the Philippines (Disney+ Hotstar), the Middle East and North Africa (MBC/Shahid) and most recently Australia (Foxtel/Binge).
The MultiChoice partnership makes all WWE Premium Live Events, including WrestleMania, as well as WWE Network’s library of original and archived programming available to stream on-demand via Showmax. Its Showmax Pro streaming service bundles the Showmax entertainment offerings with music channels, news and live sports streaming from MultiChoice’s sports unit SuperSport.
Meanwhile, SuperSport will continue to broadcast live weekly episodes of WWE flagship shows Raw, SmackDown and NXT, as well as all of its Premium Live Events under a multi-year deal extension.
“SuperSport recently launched a brand-new localized WWE content series called Jambo WWE, and the expanded WWE and MultiChoice partnership will see additional partnership initiatives leveraging WWE IP announced during the term,” the companies said.
They didn’t disclose financial terms. But according to sources close to the new deal, financially, it provides WWE with a 50 percent increase over the previous agreement with MultiChoice.
“Showmax Pro is the market leader and a perfect home for WWE content,” said Matt Drew, WWE senior vp, international. “By delivering our premium live events including WrestleMania, we believe this partnership will expand our audience and deliver even more to WWE fans throughout the region.”
Said Barry Dubovsky, chief operating officer of MultiChoice Connected Video: “Adding WWE to the Showmax platform is an exciting development that we know our entertainment and sport-loving African subscribers are going to enjoy, making WWE even more accessible and affordable.”
Showmax’s entertainment offering includes original regional fare, such as African fantasy series Blood Psalms, South African hit crime thriller series Reyka, Nigerian original limited series Diiche, Journey of the Beats, a 10-part docuseries on the origin and evolution of Afrobeats, Kenyan political drama series County49 and original thriller series Igiza. Subscribers can also watch such HBO hits as White Lotus and Euphoria.
Showmax is also the only place to stream all episodes of Reyka, the South African smash-hit show that was recently nominated for two International Emmy Awards.
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