IFlix bags $45m investment from Sky

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UK broadcaster Sky is investing $45m in Southeast Asian streaming service iFlix as part of a strategic partnership.

The two companies said they would “work together to identify areas of future collaboration across the high-growth emerging markets in which iFlix operates.”

Launched in May 2015, iFlix has signed up more than one million subscribers across Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines. The company is planning to launch in further Southeast Asian markets in the next few months. At launch, the company had backing from Malaysia’s Catcha Group and Evolution Media Capital.

Sky distributes TV content across mobile, IPTV and OTT platforms including NOW TV, Sky Online and Sky Go. Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox owns a 39% controlling stake in the company.

“iFlix has quickly established itself as Southeast Asia’s most exciting and fastest-growing streaming TV service. There are lots of opportunities for Sky and iFlix to work together and share expertise as both companies continue to expand,” said Sky group CFO Andrew Griffith.

Sky’s investment in iFlix includes the purchase of shares worth $2.5m from existing investors.

Netflix steamed into Southeast Asia in January, when it expanded its services across 130 new countries. However iFlix and other Southeast Asian SVOD platforms such as HOOQ are much cheaper and offer more local programming.