Falcon Media House, a digital media group focused on the over-the-top (OTT) market, has announced the signing of a commercial licensing agreement with Africa Enterprise Media Group (AEMG), experts in digital and broadcast technologies based in South Africa, to supply software technology and brand assets for a direct-to-consumer OTT service in Africa.
AEMG is the media arm of LaserNet Group, with whom Falcon signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in July 2017.
As part of the new development, Falcon has also announced the intention to sharpen its focus on Quiptel’s patented suite of software and technology solutions, and restructure its content division.
AEMG has now purchased a licence for the Quiptel Media Platform (QMP), including access to the patented Q-Flow technology. The contract allows AEMG to both act as a regional reseller of QMP and to launch a direct-to-consumer OTT video service in Africa. The service is expected to launch in Q4 2017, and aims to reach 25,000 paying subscribers within 24 months. As part of the agreement, Falcon will receive share of the revenues generated by the service.
Going beyond traditional network limitations, QMP delivers flawless streams using its patented Q-Flow technology. Designed to overcome the challenges of congested and slow connections to deliver content to the end user using the most efficient and cost-effective route, it enables seamless streaming over even the most challenging networks and mobile conditions. Rather than investing in hardware and laying new network cables, the joint solution will enable broadcasters and cable companies to increase their market share with a lower capital expenditure. Q-Flow provides a unique win-win solution for both the OTT Operator and their end users alike.
Ivan Bridgens, the CEO of Africa Enterprise Media Group, said: “We are delighted to strengthen our commercial partnership with Falcon Media House and Quiptel, and deliver TeeVee Africa, a direct-to-consumer OTT video service for African consumers. This burgeoning market is often overlooked, and technology solutions designed for developed markets are typically not suitable to the harsh technology realities on the continent. Luckily, with QMP and Q-Flow we can serve seamless video streams across any network and device, finally bringing exciting content to millions of African consumers.”
Gert Rieder, CEO of Falcon Media House, commented: “When we signed the MoU with AEMG in July, it was always our intention to move to a commercial arrangement fast. This deal is a testament not only to our ability to execute on our plans, but also an important step in our joint efforts with AEMG to deliver seamless video streaming services to the African continent. More than half a billion people across Africa now subscribe to mobile services, with the number expected to grow to 725 million by 2020 – and these are the defacto devices used to consume content. We are excited about our partnership with AEMG and our ability to capitalise on this untapped market opportunity.”
Since coming to market in March 2017, Falcon has demonstrated the potential of Quiptel’s patented software technology, securing global partner agreements to deliver OTT services in Africa and Asia, as well as a MoU with TATA Communications (UK) Limited to collaborate on OTT services aimed at brands, content creators, content catalogues and rights holders. Falcon has also launched a beta version of a dedicated sports service together with The Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC).
The firm’s management team was further given a boost with the appointment of Diane McGrath, a US-based tech and media guru, as the Falcon Media House Chief Strategy Officer in June 2017.
Going forward, Quiptel’s technology and software patents will now drive the company’s primary business focus. This strategic refinement simplifies the company’s offering, where the Falcon Board see significant potential to provide a clear path to market for global brands, operators and rights-holders that are under-served by existing providers.
As the technology focus tightens, the Falcon Board has taken the opportunity to restructure the company’s interest in the Teevee Makers division. Teevee Makers will now become a separate entity independent of the Falcon Media House group. As part of the new set-up, Teevee Makers will assume responsibility for the ECAC service under a new commercial licensing agreement, and the ECAC service is expected to launch in 2017, with Quiptel as a technology supplier. By moving to a licence and revenue sharing model, the company will reduce its financial exposure whilst maintaining significant growth potential.
Gert Rieder, CEO, Falcon Media House, commented: “We believe that sharpening our strategic focus on our proprietary technology will benefit Falcon, its customers and shareholders both in the short and long term. We recognise, as do our customers, that the best returns for the company, in the fast-paced and dynamic video streaming market, will come from accelerating the development of our core Quiptel technology, which has already generated significant interest. The deal with AEMG is a clear validation of our new technology strategy.
Falcon Media House is a multi-divisional, global internet media group. The Group is capitalising on explosive demand for digital video, streamed “live” and “on-demand” known as the Over-The-Top (OTT) video streaming market.