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TelkomONE targets more subscriptions with local content

Samuel Mungadze
By Samuel Mungadze, Africa editor
Johannesburg, 29 Jan 2021

Telkom’s recently-launched TelkomONE streaming service is set to invest R300 000 to produce three Web series, a move aimed at growing subscriptions on the over-the-top (OTT) platform.

The company says it will work with three local producers that were selected in a content creation competition it hosted a few weeks ago.

The winners will each receive a R100 000 cash injection to produce a full Web-series for the OTT platform.

Joint prize-winners Lisa Marie Pyanee and Gosiame Ntshole in the comedy category, Brandon Olifant (mobivela) and Patty Monroe (lifestyle) will have their final projects screened on the TelkomONE platform, as part of its AMP subscription.

TelkomONE’s investment in original content comes as more telco industry executives switch their focus to digital content propositions, TV and radio, which are now driving revenue growth.

According to professional services group Ernst & Young in its report: Why telcos are moving deeper into content, operators are now key players in pay-TV markets worldwide, and differentiated TV and video content are critical in accelerating revenue growth.

Commenting on the TelkomONE content project, Wanda Mkhize, Telkom executive: smart home and content, says: “I am looking forward to seeing what these talented creators will produce for TelkomONE and I’m excited for South Africans to see it. This is a project I’m so proud of; and one that truly opens up the industry in meaningful ways.

“We were looking for content producers that stood out in how they shared their stories, as well as relatable, authentically South African content that moved us, made us laugh and kept us engaged and entertained.”

The winners thanked TelkomONE for promoting creatives and hosting their content on the OTT platform.

Olifant, who won in the mobivela category for his production, Crazy and Homeless, comments: “TelkomONE really did the most on this one; giving us young creatives a platform to showcase and share our work is really applaudable.”

TelkomONE was launched in November and also hosts public broadcaster, the South African Broadcasting’s (SABC’s) free-to-air radio and TV channels.

The company penned a five-year deal with the broadcaster, with the SABC providing its content to Telkom on a non-exclusive basis. In exchange, the SABC will receive a carriage licence fee, as well as share in the advertising revenue generated on the TelkomONE platform.

TelkomONE streams live SABC's television channels 1, 2, Sport and Education, as well as all 19 SABC radio stations.