Sky, ViacomCBS Set to Launch Paramount+ in Western Europe in 2022

Comcast’s satellite TV operator Sky and ViacomCBS International are set to launch the Paramount+ subscription streaming video platform in Western Europe in 2022. The two companies Aug. 18 announced that Paramount+ will launch on Sky platforms in the U.K., Ireland, Italy, Germany, Switzerland and Austria as part of a new multiyear distribution agreement that also includes the extended carriage of ViacomCBS’s portfolio of pay-TV channels and the renewal of Sky as an ad sales partner in select markets.

Paramount+ is the latest third-party content app to come to Sky Q, adding more than 10,000 hours of content, and furthering Sky’s strategy congregating access to content in one place.

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“This transformative distribution deal is key to accelerating our global ambitions in streaming while also supporting Sky’s strategic objectives to better serve audiences with greater flexibility in how they consume our content across all platforms,” Raffaele Annecchino, CEO of ViacomCBS Networks International, said in a statement.

Upon launch, Sky Cinema subs will get Paramount+ included at no additional cost. As part of this partnership, Paramount Pictures’ feature films will remain available on Sky Cinema in the U.K. and will join Sky Cinema in Germany and Italy in 2022. All other Sky customers will be able to subscribe to Paramount+ as an add-on to their account.

Paramount+ will also be available direct-to-consumer in UK, Ireland, Italy and GSA through the Paramount+ app for iOS and Android and across supported connected TV devices and OTT platforms. Pricing and local content offering will be announced at a later date.

Movies that will become available through 2022 in the U.K., Ireland, Italy and other countries include a collection of scripted, exclusive Paramount+ originals and new takes on film franchises, including HaloThe Offer and the new “iCarly” series. As the international home of Showtime, the service will offer “The Man Who Fell to Earth,” “Ripley,” “Super Pumped” and “American Gigolo,” in addition to titles from ViacomCBS, such as “Kamp Koral: SpongeBob’s Under Years,” “Star Trek: Prodigy,” and “MTV Unplugged.” The service will also feature a collection of new premieres and classics from the “Mission: Impossible” and “Transformers” movie franchises.

“Paramount+ is an excellent service with a huge range of fantastic films and TV series, and our new, broader agreement with ViacomCBS will benefit both businesses,” said Stephen van Rooyen, EVP and chief executive for U.K. and Europe at Sky.

In addition, ViacomCBS and Sky reached a multiyear extension for carriage of ViacomCBS’s linear channels — including Comedy Central, MTV and Nickelodeon — in the U.K., Ireland, Italy and other European countries.

ViacomCBS also renewed its multiyear agreement with Sky as an ad sales partner for all platforms and channels in the U.K. and Italy. Sky Media will continue to handle ad sales across the ViacomCBS portfolio of channels, including Channel 5 in the UK, where ViacomCBS and Channel 5 will benefit from Sky Media’s innovation in addressable advertising.

ViacomCBS Networks International Promotes Ezequiel Fonseca Zas to GM of Streaming and Mobile

ViacomCBS Networks International May 18 announced that Ezequiel “Quelo” Fonseca Zas, formerly SVP of emerging business for VCNI Americas, has been promoted to GM of streaming and mobile for international markets.

Fonseca Zas will report to Pierluigi Gazzolo, VCNI’s president of streaming and studios, and for his mobile responsibilities to Raffaele Annecchino, president of VCNI EMEAA and leader of VCNI’s mobile strategy.

Ezequiel Fonseca Zas

In his new role, Fonseca Zas will lead VCNI’s streaming business, strategy and international product rollout, with a focus on Pluto TV, Paramount+ and Noggin. Fonseca Zas will work with regional digital and streaming leaders on a variety of go-to-market models, as well as ViacomCBS’s digital and streaming leadership to maximize the global impact of the business.

Additionally, Fonseca Zas will lead the development of mobile products and partnerships with telco companies, while also working to create new revenue streams in emerging areas such as gaming, connected cars, wearables and AR/VR offerings.

“Quelo is an outstanding leader who brings a wealth of expertise to this critical international role. I’m confident that Quelo will play a key role in the transformation of our business by accelerating VCNI’s digital and streaming strategy,” Gazzolo said in a statement.

Since acquiring Ad-supported VOD service Pluto TV last year for $340 million, ViacomCBS is begun incorporating the platform as an over-the-top video conduit distributing proprietary content globally.

“We see tremendous opportunity to grow ViacomCBS’s streaming and mobile businesses internationally,” Fonseca Zas said. “Our global operating footprint, including linear reach and on-the-ground resources, paired with ownership of the world’s most valuable IP and differentiated technology, will enable ViacomCBS to be a leader in the mobile and streaming space.”