OCS could be bought by Canal+

Is OCS on borrowed time? Orange’s video-on-demand service could fall into the hands of Canal+, which is seeking to strengthen itself against the streaming giants.

The Canal+ group is in advanced discussions to acquire OCS and the film/television activities of Orange. The publication variety adds that exclusive negotiations could open as early as September. The two companies are used to working together: OCS has been distributed by Canal+ since 2011, and the parent company Vivendi owns 33.3% of the VOD service.

HBO takes off

In addition to OCS, the agreement would include the purchase of Orange Studio, the subsidiary of the operator responsible for co-producing films, selling them abroad and distributing them in France. Canal+ would thus strengthen its positions on the French market, the group being the leading financier of French cinema. But as far as the consumer is concerned, it is above all the fate reserved for OCS that can be worrying.

OCS is a service appreciated by its subscribers for at least one good reason: it is the exclusive distributor of HBO series! Unfortunately, the agreement that binds the American chain to Orange will end at the beginning of next year. Then, the owner Warner Bros intends to launch a new streaming platform in France which will offer not only HBO programs but also those of Discovery.

Isolated and without the help of HBO series, we do not give much to OCS. But it is not necessarily more pleasing if the service lands in the bosom of Canal+. A source close to Orange recalled the previous TPS, bought in 2007 by Canal+ and which disappeared from small screens in 2012. In the event of an acquisition, will OCS meet the same fate? It will however be necessary that the transaction, if it is recorded, be authorized by the Autorité de la concurrence. The green light could still require a year of negotiations.

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