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BBC Worldwide strikes Africa SVOD deal with Iflix

Luther

Luther

BBC Worldwide has sold a raft of programmes including Top Gear and Luther to African Netflix rival iflix.

The deal, the first between the commercial arm of the UK pubcaster and the African streaming service, covers 150 hours of UK programming. As well as popular motoring format Top Gear and Idris Elba cop series Luther, there are titles including BBC comedy Citizen Khan.

Iflix is about to roll out its SVOD service across sub-Saharan Africa, taking on the global and local streaming players.

Joel Churcher, vice president and general manager for Africa, BBC Worldwide, told TBI about the SVOD deal while in Cannes for MIPTV. “It’s our first deal with iflix and comes ahead of their launch and covers drama, fact-ent and comedy,” he said. “Africans want choice and there is an appetite for international, as well as local, content.”

Worldwide has sealed a raft of other programming deals in Africa, Churcher said.

It has also licensed a 250-hour drama package to regional mobile operators VodaCom and MTN that includes iconic sci fi series Doctor Who and BBC drama Call the Midwife. The deal spans 11 territories in Africa including Nigeria and South Africa. The iflix deal does not, meanwhile, cover South Africa.