Shahid, a video streaming and TV catch-up service in the Middle East and North Africa region announced partnerships with Disney, Fox, and Spotify for exclusive content.
The Disney and Fox partnerships will provide around 3,000 additional hours of entertainment to the streaming platform, with a partnership with Spotify likely to offer music services on the horizon.
MBC, the largest private free-to-air broadcasting company in the Middle East and owner of Shahid, announced the new partnerships at an event held at the Dubai Opera followed by a lightshow on the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building.
“We’re immensely proud to provide the region with an advanced digital platform that is on par with the best in the world. Shahid is a global brand that is worth watching,” said MBC Group Chairman Sheikh Waleed al-Ibrahim at the event.
“At MBC Group, we are going to continue to provide the best media experience in the entire region, engineering ideas and uniting the very best in creative talent,” he said. “It’s our time.”
Shahid was launched in 2009 and already provides access to MBC’s network, including nine live HD channels and a catch-up service.
MBC Group CEO Marc Antoine d’Halluin noted the company’s track record over the past decade. “During the past ten years, MBC has acquired and produced approximately 46,000 hours of Arabic-language entertainment content, valued at an estimated $1.3 billion,” he said. “This is broken down into 26,000 hours of media, entertainment and other content, plus 20,000 hours of television series, which includes about 600 dramas.”
“Shahid will certainly benefit from MBC's proven experience in investment and growth to provide the best and most diverse international digital media experience in the region,” he said.
Shahid is offering an introductory rate to celebrate the partnership announcement with a 70 percent discount off its VIP subscription until the end of February.
Al-Ibrahim also commented on Saudi Arabia’s various reforms that are taking place.
“The social and economic reforms currently being witnessed by my home country, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia – ones that are being spearheaded by His Royal Highness the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman – is something we have always dreamed of,” he said. “It gives me great pride to witness this dream being finally realized.”
“We are leveraging the pivotal moment the Kingdom is currently witnessing, which includes expanding on the local and regional media content industry – and fostering the talent that will enable us to do so,” he added.