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Movistar+ originals ‘driving bigger audiences’ than El Clásico

Telefónica-owned Movistar+’s investment in series has proved ‘surprisingly’ effective at driving subscriber engagement, with a significant number of series achieving higher ratings than El Clásico football matches between Real Madrid and Barcelona, according to Sergio Osle, president of Movistar+.

Speaking at the Variety TV Summit in London this morning, Osle said that subscriber engagement is “very important” for Telefónica, including how much time subscribers spent watching content that the platform itself has produced.

Osle said that Movistar+ produced its own entertainment content, primarily for #0, its own sports content, and “the jewel in the crown”, fiction, where it was spending €100 million on series and had already launched 21 titles.

“We have been surprised by the audience for our own-produced fiction,” he said.

He said that about eight of the top 10 shows on the platform “come from us”, with five or six series having audiences that are higher than that for El Clasico football fixtures between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

Movistar+ is convinced of the value of retaining control of its platform, rather than opening up to third-party apps, said Osle.

Osle said that Movistar+ did not believe in an open Android TV-type platform, but that it integrated partners on a one-to-one basis, even if this meant it took longer to complete those integrations.

“The other area we focus on a lot is data,” he said, adding that providing targeted recommendation was one way for the platform to give value.

Osle said that having a branded box in subscribers’ homes was very valuable. “That is very valuable for us…and that is what adds value for the customer,” he said.