South Africa telecom provider, Telkom said Netflix will no longer be available on the South African phone and internet company’s set-top box from October.
According to Content Executive Wanda Mkhize, an agreement between the parties has come to an end and will not be extended, citing no specific reason. Other content partnerships will be revealed later, she added.
She said “Our current partnership with Netflix has unfortunately come to an end…. While customers will no longer have access to Netflix on the Telkom set-top box from 1 October 2021, they will still be able to access other OTT services on their STB.”
Netflix’s partnership with Telkom began in 2018, marking the first time the video-on-demand service has partnered with a South African telecoms operator.
The move comes after MultiChoice Group Ltd signed deals with Netflix and Amazon.com to offer their streaming services through its new decoder.
Netflix has begun to develop more local content in recent years, premiering South African dramas as “Queen Sono” and “Blood and Water.” In an attempt to expand across the continent, the American corporation has also added Zimbabwean media billionaire, Strive Masiyiwa to its board of directors.
This development occurs at a time when Netflix’s subscriber growth rate is slowing following the pandemic’s peak. The video streaming service only achieved 3.98 million new sign-ups in the first quarter of 2021, down from 15.8 million during the shutdown.
Netflix, which offers services in over 190 countries, including Nigeria and South Africa, has started offering a free mobile plan in Kenya with some of its TV series and movies, another tactic geared at boosting development in a major African market.
Netflix also announced that it is entering the gaming sector, with games becoming a new content category. The company recently acquired Night School Studio, a video game creator to create great gaming experience for its users around the world.