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Starz: SVOD Consumers Abandon Video Stores

6 May, 2002 By: Hive News

Nearly three in four, or 74 percent, Starz On Demand users said they would rent fewer videos and/or DVDs as a result of having Starz On Demand, a new survey from cable provider Starz Encore Group, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Liberty Media Corp.

"With great titles, such as Rush Hour 2 and 'The Princess Diaries, Starz On Demand provides cable with the best vehicle for repatriating the $8+ billion per year that consumers still spend renting videos and DVDs," said Greg DePrez, VP of subscription VOD of Starz Encore. "The industry's leading trade show is a terrific venue for us to remind operators that subscription VOD is the best way to introduce the VOD platform to consumers."

Eighty-six percent of Starz On Demand users say the product makes them more satisfied with their cable service, 91 percent said they were either "very likely" or "somewhat likely" to recommend the hit movies subscription VOD service to their friends, while nearly one in five attributed their introduction to the service as a direct result of word-of-mouth, according to new Starz research.

This finding was based on surveys conducted last month among 300 Starz On Demand users and was released at the National Cable and Telecommunications Association (NCTA) convention in New Orleans.

"Programmers and operators must break through the clutter, reach consumers, and give them the power and control [that] enables them to select movies on demand with DVD-like control with no per-transaction fees and no trips to the video store," DePrez said.

Eighty-three percent of Starz On Demand users said they are more likely to watch Starz Super Pak movie programming with the VOD add-on than without.

Starz On Demand is a subscription add-on to Starz Super Pak and provides impulse viewing of Starz Super Pak movies for a flat monthly.

"Our chairman John J. Sie made a bold stroke by securing the SVOD rights to our programming starting back in 1999,” said Mike Hale, EVP and chief marketing officer for Starz Encore. “If Starz Encore can ultimately realize increased viewership, greater name recognition, and better appreciation of our movie product because of Starz On Demand, we will be poised to take the business to the next level, as John outlined for us three years ago.”

Movies promised this year include The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, Spy Game, American Pie 2, America's Sweethearts, and The Fast and the Furious.

Studios supplying films to Starz On Demand include Disney, Universal, Sony, New Line, Revolution Studios, MGM, Universal, Samuel Goldwyn Films, and Starz Pictures.

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