Content License And Distribution Agreements for OTT Streaming

Frndly TV, an internet-TV streaming service, founded two years ago by former Dish Network executives, has announced a multi-year distribution deal to bring A+E Networks’ portfolio of brands to Frndly’s subscribers. The multi-year distribution agreement between A&E Networks and Frndly TV will offer Frndly TV’s more than 500,000 subscribers’ access to thirty live TV channels including the Hallmark Channel, A&E, The HISTORY Channel, Lifetime, Lifetime Movie Network, ViceTV, the Weather Channel, and video-on-demand programming.

Built from the Ground Up

Chief programming officer of Frndly TV, Michael McKenna, said, “…Our customers are both loyal and vocal — and they have asked us about adding the great A+E Networks’ content. Working with the good folks at A+E, we are now able to add outstanding quality to our programming lineup with some of the most desired and loved channels in all TV.”

Built from the ground up, Frndly TV is the first television streaming service designed for thrifty American consumers looking for family friendly viewing content. The service has continued to increase their range of programming and reached profitability in its second year. Although Frndly TV has a much smaller subscriber base than larger networks such as YouTube TV, its base is comparable to Direct TV Stream’s subscriber base. Unlike Alphabet Inc.’s YouTube TV and Walt Disney Co’s Hulu + Live TV, Frndly TV focuses on family-friendly content and avoids sports and news networks. Frndly TV’s chief operating officer and one of its co-founders, Andy Karofsky, explained, “The absence of sports, news and major entertainment networks, like WarnerMedia’s TBS or NBCUniversal’s USA Network, allows the service to keep its subscription price on the lower end.”

Content License And Distribution Agreements for OTT Streaming

The competition in the internet streaming subscription market, which is forecasted to grow to nearly 2 billion services by 2025 globally, has steadily intensified. Frndly TV’s focused delivery combined with a low price point has enabled them to grow in a market that has prompted big names such as Sony Corp.’s PlayStation Vue and AT&T’s Watch TV to discontinue their streaming services.

Entrepreneurs looking to launch their own subscription based streaming service will need to find the right content niche in order to survive in such an increasingly competitive marketplace. Streaming service providers must also secure licensing and distribution agreements for the content they stream to their subscribers. Television and motion picture licensing and distribution agreements can be complex and multi-faceted, containing details ranging from specifying the authorized languages to establishing distribution and non-theatrical media platform exploitation requirements. An experienced motion picture content licensing and distribution lawyer can ensure that all critical terms and conditions are specified in your content licensing or distribution agreements.

In a David vs Goliath market, Frndly TV has continued to grow and turn a profit, proof that there is room in the marketplace for highly focused streaming services with competitive pricing. According to Byron Allen, owner of The Weather Channel, Recipe.TV and Local Now, all available on Frndly TV, “People just don’t want to be paying as much as they’ve been paying for the content…I think price point matters.”

More Information on Subscription Based Streaming Services

To learn more about the process of building a subscription based streaming service or negotiating motion picture content licensing or distribution agreements, please contact an attorney online or call 310–473–3500. From our Los Angeles law office, we represent clients throughout California, the United States and around the world.



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Brian J. Murphy

Entertainment, Intellectual Property, Internet, New Media and Sports Law Group.