Vodafone Secures Sky Deutschland Content for Internet TV ServiceCornelius Rahn
Vodafone Group Plc, which agreed to buy Kabel Deutschland Holding AG in a 7.7 billion-euro ($10 billion) deal to expand its German fixed-line business, has secured television content from Sky Deutschland AG.
People using Vodafone Germany’s Internet TV service will be able to access Munich-based Sky’s programs starting in August, including live Bundesliga soccer matches and series such as HBO’s fantasy-adventure series “Game of Thrones,” the companies said in separate statements today.
“We’re strengthening our position as an integrated provider of fixed-line, wireless connections, data services and TV,” said Erik Friemuth, head of consumer marketing at the German unit of Newbury, England-based Vodafone.
The deal is part of Vodafone’s effort to reduce its reliance on revenue from traditional mobile-phone services in Europe’s biggest telecommunications market. For Sky, which has a target to post its first operating profit since 2007 this year after surpassing 3.4 million subscribers, it provides another route to attract viewers. Kabel Deutschland also has a deal to offer Sky Deutschland content.
Vodafone in May signed a deal with Deutsche Telekom AG to gain better access to the former German phone monopoly’s fast Internet lines. Vodafone TV, which started in Germany in early 2011 and which currently has 150,000 customers, lags behind Deutsche Telekom’s Entertain service, which has more than 2 million customers.