Naspers launches Netflix competitor ShowMax

John Kotsaftis, the general manager for ShowMax in South Africa. (Gareth van Zyl)
John Kotsaftis, the general manager for ShowMax in South Africa. (Gareth van Zyl)

Johannesburg - Multinational media and internet company Naspers has launched its competitor to internet streaming service Netflix dubbed ShowMax.

The service consists of 750 titles of 850 complete seasons over 19 000 episodes, over 11 000 hours of viewing time, according to John Kotsaftis, the general manager for ShowMax in South Africa.

Content on the service will include TV series and movies and a premium subscription costs R99 per month.

TV shows range from Game of Thrones to British series such as Sherlock and Afrikaans content like Orkney Snork Nie!

"We actually have the ability to build something from scratch and put something together,” said Kotsaftis.

"Broadband is exploding everywhere.

"We're at the cusp of a broadband explosion here in South Africa,” Kotsaftis added.

Kotsaftis further said there are up to one million internet subscribers in South Africa who have sufficient bandwidth to use the service.

Kotsaftis told Fin24 that the service is at first targeting South Africa with an aim to launch into other markets thereafter.

The move by Naspers to launch ShowMax also comes after Netflix announced that it plans to expand to markets such as South Africa by the end of 2016.

Other streaming services such as MTN’s FrontRow and Times Media Group’s Vidi have also been launched in South Africa thus far.

* Fin24 is part of Media24, a subsidiary of Naspers.

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