Paramount+’s Marco Nobili: Non-Traditional Pacts Like Formula 1 Deal Key To Driving Business In Asia Pacific — ATF

Paramount+’s plan for growth in Asia-Pacific is taking shape.

Replicating the global Formula 1 promotional deal the streamer struck with Formula 1 will be a key tentpole of the strategy in the region, according to Executive VP and International General Manager Marco Nobili.

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He appeared via video link on stage at the Asia TV Forum & Market today to discuss how premium tier offerings and unusual pacts such as the Formula 1 agreement would drive business locally.

Following its launch in Korea and Japan earlier in recent months, Paramount+ is competing with local players and international rivals such as Prime Video and Netflix in APAC. Nobili said striking non-traditional deals would increase its market penetration.

“We are bringing entertainment to people that want to be entertained,” he said, referring to the Formula 1 partnership, which has seen Paramount+ shows such as Special Ops: Lioness advertized during races around the world. “People are already there to be entertained and we are bringing our brand and service to them.”

As such, his team is exploring ways to replicate similar partnerships in APAC.

In Australia and New Zealand, an airline partnership with Australian national carrier Qantas has bolstered viewership of Paramount+ content, alongside developing local originals, said Beverley McGarvey, Executive VP and Chief Content Officer of Paramount ANZ.

Pointing out the importance of legacy shows and brands, McGarvey has overseen the production of localized titles like NCIS: Sydney, a new season of The Amazing Race Australia and an upcoming season of Top Gear: Australia, which will launch in 2024.

“In Australia, people are willing to pay for content,” she said. “Australian customers have what we call ‘champagne taste.’ They like premium content and for it to look premium and high-budget, because of the nature of the ecosystem. We’re able to offer that to them and the great thing about making high-end content is that it is a bit more evergreen. It can last and it can do things in other countries.”

Looking into 2024, Nobili was bullish about the growth of Paramount+ globally. “Top-line revenue is certainly one of the KPIs that I keep a very high focus on because revenue really gives you an idea of subscription growth and at the same time, revenue per user,” he added.

“We certainly want to continue to think about how we monetize our customer base. As we scale it, increasing the revenue per user is a key component, so we have recently launched a premium tier in some of these markets,” said Nobili, referring to Australia, Brazil, Canada and Mexico. “That premium tier is generating a higher revenue per user by providing more features and improved capabilities to the customers.”

However, Nobili was quick to point out that each market will require a different approach, especially in a highly-fragmented market like APAC. “Some markets are more focused on the subscription volume, so you really want to leverage the volume to get a certain amount of subscriber base that allows you to pass the scale to become relevant and profitable in those markets,” he said. “In some other markets, you can ask for a higher amount for the content so you might not need to become deeply penetrated in the market to monetize.”

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