TVNZ Adds NBCUni to Slate

A new output deal with NBCUniversal for TVNZ’s free-to-air and on-demand channels would appear to rule out the global distributor setting up its own streaming service here.

“Through this deal – which covers theatrical, library television titles and the phenomenal new series being produced by and for our various NBCU brands, including our new streaming service Peacock – we are able to highlight the strength and breadth of our amazing content portfolio,” Belinda Menendez, NBCUniversal’s President & Chief Revenue Officer, Global Distribution and International, says.

The deal will beef up TVNZ OnDemand’s slate hugely amid a proliferation of streaming services in this market.

Among the new series that will screen here for the first time are Belgravia, Girls5eva and Dr. Death.

Here’s the media release:

TVNZ announces multi-year content rights deal with NBCUniversal

TVNZ has announced an extensive multi-year content deal with NBCUniversal (NBCU) for the rights to air premium international content from the leading media and entertainment company on TVNZ OnDemand and TVNZ’s free-to-air channels.

Through this agreement with NBCUniversal Global Distribution, TVNZ has acquired hundreds of scripted series produced by Universal Studio Group for Peacock, NBC, USA Network and SYFY, in addition to titles from the Oxygen and DreamWorks Animation brands, including premium new series on global release dates and an extensive collection of quality library titles.

Cate Slater, TVNZ’s Director of Content, said the deal commences from July this year and will be a significant boost for TVNZ viewers.

“We are rapt to be working with NBCU to offer our viewers access to this vast collection of quality international titles.

“This year, we’ll be introducing hundreds of hours of acclaimed series such as Downton Abbey, 30 Rock, Heroes and Mr. Robot, in addition to new series like Brave New World, Saved by the Bell, Punky Brewster and Rutherford Falls.

“The highly anticipated Dr. Death, which stars Joshua Jackson, Grace Gummer, AnnaSophia Robb with Christian Slater and Alec Baldwin, will be available on TVNZ on July 23, 2021.

“Covid-19 has significantly impacted the availability of international content and in response we’ve ramped up our local content production.

“To complement our local line-up with beloved hits like The Office (U.S.) and Parks and Recreation; bingeworthy dramas like Belgravia (from the creators of Downton Abbey); new laugh-out-loud comedies such as Girls5eva (starring Sara Bareilles, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Paula Pell and Busy Philipps); popular sci-fi shows including 12 Monkeys and Killjoys; Oxygen’s true crime programming including Homicide for the Holidays, The Disappearance of Natalee Holloway and In Ice Cold Blood, hosted by Ice T; and much-loved kids series from the hit DreamWorks Animation franchises such as Trolls and How to Train Your Dragon, means that TVNZ has something for everyone. And all free to view.”

TVNZ OnDemand is now attracting over a million unique viewers per week* and this deal was negotiated with digital rights front of mind.

TVNZ OnDemand will benefit from well over one thousand hours of exceptional shows annually through the deal. Plus, a raft of popular movies will find a home on TVNZ 2, including films from the blockbuster Fast and Furious, Bourne, Jurassic Park, American Pie, The Boss Baby, The Croods and Despicable Me franchises.

Belinda Menendez, NBCUniversal’s President & Chief Revenue Officer, Global Distribution and International, said: “We have had a longstanding relationship with TVNZ and are delighted to expand upon our partnership with them through this multi-faceted agreement.

“Through this deal – which covers theatrical, library television titles and the phenomenal new series being produced by and for our various NBCU brands, including our new streaming service Peacock – we are able to highlight the strength and breadth of our amazing content portfolio.”

*Nielsen CMI Q1 20 – Q4 20, AP15+, watched TVNZ OD in the last 7 days

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10 Responses to “TVNZ Adds NBCUni to Slate”

  1. Wow. After TVNZ wrote off so much with the ABC-Disney output deal I’d have thought output deals like this were a thing of the past. Short memories perhaps?

  2. Discovery will fire back with Warner Bros. Discovery next year 😁

  3. I think we are going to go back to the days of output deals! There doesn’t appear to be much of a point for a lot of the US networks/studios in launching for a New Zealand market because the costs of maintaining that platform are too extreme (local PR, management, maybe some infrastructure etc). Easier to get TVNZ/Discovery to pay you to house your content … like in the days when linear TV was the only way. Netflix, Disney and Amazon can get economies of scale here because they are behemoths – harder for NBC which doesn’t have a natural foothold in the market.

  4. Quite surprised by this deal, I thought output deals were outdated for this era of television but then again to air all your surplus and network duds Ondemand does allow you to maximize the full output deal unlike the previous decades. I do have questions around whether this deal impacts Bravo and the viability of that joint venture and does this new deal mean that all of NBCUNIVERSAL’s new season lineup will appear ondemand/broadcast?

  5. Can you clarify TVNZ’s output deal given the announcement you posted previously: https://www.screenscribe.net/sky-to-launch-hd-crime-drama-channel/ TV3 have obviously lost the popular Fast and Furious rights but will SVU etc move across or are they ROS on TV3? Who gets dibs on new content (Young Rock, Equalizer) between Sky and TVNZ – noting they both mention the same titles in their press releases …

  6. Hey, everyone. Apologies for late reply but only had time yesterday to post the announcement — the rest of the day was already a write-off. There’s much to analyse here but I think a strategic alliance such as this was inevitable as the likes of NBCUni maximises its linear and streaming options in our small market without setting up its own operation (as Clint concisely argues). With this strategy, NBCUni spreads its content over multiple platforms while TVNZ shores up its streaming arsenal with exclusive original and strong library content to compete against subscription rivals Neon, Netflix etc on an ad-supported model (which is gaining popularity in the US). It also gives TVNZ another premium supply line in case, as Trevor observes, Discovery’s relationship with Warners affects its WB deal long-time. Have yet to dig into the fine detail re existing arrangements, Mike, but I imagine Three/Discovery retains its existing NBCUni series. Similarly, Sky’s NBCUni crime channel won’t be affected as I doubt the TVNZ deal covers the studio’s procedurals. Re Bravo, Leo: the TVNZ deal is for scripted content-only whereas Bravo is reality-driven. The TVNZ deal may also include specific linear and digital rights that mitigate conflicts with NBCUni’s other partners. All in all, I think NBCUni has shrewdly exploited all its relationships in this territory to maximise revenue and audience for its product when media’s never been more fragmented.

  7. Guess that means no Peacock launch here. Hopefully this will mean that the rest of The Blacklist season 8 will now get shown here rather than locked away in the Three vault.

  8. Great analysis Phil. Very interesting, thanks!

  9. Thanks, K! Appreciate the feedback.

  10. Cheers Philip for the analysis on this new deal. However you look at it, TVNZ has brought itself some time in terms of where to next especially with the proposed merger with RNZ and the impact this will have on its commercial activity. Interesting you say that the ad supported model is gaining popularity in the US, you would thought the Americans hated ads as much as we do.

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