Monday, August 08, 2022

How Paramount+ Is Connecting With The South Korean Market

Paramount+ is looking to cause waves in APAC. Catherine Park, senior vice-president, head of office and streaming, reveals how it is activating in South Korea and beyond.

Paramount+ has big plans for the Korean market

The US-based entertainment company has been on a launch spree with its foray into Latin America, Australia, Canada and the Nordics, and most recently high-profile launches in South Korea and the UK & Ireland.

South Korea, a bustling market for streaming as well as content production, music and culture, marks the company’s debut into the saturated, high-growth Asian market.

The Drum recently went behind the leading player’s over-the-top (OTT) plans.

Catherine Park, Paramount’s head of office and streaming for Asia, says about the brand’s foray into Asia: “With the sheer size of its population coupled with the available technology and creativity, Asia is the place to be if you want to succeed and scale a streaming business.”

It has been strategically mapping out which countries to expand into, with Asia and South Korea the obvious choice for Paramount+.

Park continues: “South Korea is a vibrant market both for a streaming subscription business and for the content that is taking the global stage. South Korean content, music and culture are hot right now – we want to tap into that demand, and CJ ENM and Tving are the perfect partners.”

The Paramount+ offering has launched with its premium entertainment on Tving to complement the local South Korean content on the channel. “This partnership is a great opportunity for our content to be rediscovered and appreciated by South Korean audiences,” says Park.

The strategic multilateral partnership includes co-productions for original series and films, content licensing and distribution. It would let the South Korean audience view Paramount+ originals titles released for the first time in the country, as well as Paramount Pictures’ classic hits such as Mission: Impossible and Nickelodeon shows including SpongeBob SquarePants.

The first originally-produced series as part of the Paramount+ collaboration with Tving, Yonder is also soon to be launched. Park says: “To grow our reach and business in South Korea, we will continuously seek to better understand what our local audiences want and cater to those preferences.”

But in the wider APAC space, Paramount+ also has its eyes on India, where it will have to also battle new entrants such as Netflix and Amazon Prime. It will land in that market by 2023 in partnership with Viacom18.

While refusing to comment on other media players directly, Park did say that it has a more diversified distribution strategy when it comes to the debate around the subscription-only model or D2C.

She adds: “We have a solid ecosystem – linear, streaming, free-to-pay – as well as a hard bundle model, and different streaming products to address the different needs in each market.”

The US-based entertainment company defines its approach market-by-market, so it can quickly enter a market with a locally-relevant streaming model for long-term growth – whether it is a subscription, Fast (Free Advertisement Streaming channels and AVOD), or with Free and PayTV linear networks, she says.

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