JC Acosta: ‘Our aim with Pluto TV is to become the undisputed AVOD leaders in Latin America’

JC Acosta, President at ViacomCBS International Studios & ViacomCBS Networks Americas, was interviewed by Nextv News Latin America, and gave details about Pluto TV’s performance in the region; the goals set for the AVOD OTT in Latin America; its launch in Brazil, which will take place in December, and the ‘boom’ of AVOD platforms that is taking place on the continent.

 

How has Pluto TV’s performance been in Latin America since its launch?

In April, when we launched the platform in 17 Spanish-speaking Latin American countries, Pluto TV had 24 channels. Today, almost 8 months later, with the new additions, we have a large grid with more than 70 channels and 18 thousand hours of movies, series, shows and entertainment for the whole family, which continues to grow month by month. The growth has been exceptional.

 Since the launch of Pluto TV, the service has grown continuously in number of users and minutes consumed, already reaching 36 million users worldwide. We lead the downloads of applications in iOS and Android stores and, month by month, we see how the consumption of minutes grows on the platform.

 To mention an example, in September, Pluto TV ranked second in the most downloaded entertainment applications in Latin America and achieved first position in Argentina, where it was the most downloaded application in the category.

 *The data  belongs to Sensor Tower

 

What goals are set for Pluto TV in the region?

 Grow, grow and grow. In Latin America we continue to increase the platform’s features and add more and more content. We aim to be the undisputed leaders in AVOD. We are also very excited about the arrival of Pluto TV in Brazil.

 Pluto TV lands in Brazil with 24 channels with curated content, including hit TV series, award-winning films and a wide range of genres including reality, anime, lifestyle, competitions, nature, crime, documentaries and content for children. From its launch, new channels will be added every month to offer the best and most varied content initiative for all audiences.

 We are confident that audiences in Brazil will enjoy the variety of content and the ease of the platform that Pluto TV offers.

 

What standards are taken into account to launch new channels for the platform?

 First of all, we prioritize the content diversity and quality, so that Pluto TV is the platform chosen by everyone and provides the movies, series and shows audiences prefer to watch. To do this, we partner with the most recognized content partners in the entertainment industry to provide a variety of genres including reality, anime, lifestyle, sports, film, novels, nature, documentaries and children’s content.

 In addition, we are very aware of the consumption preferences of users within the platform and we constantly create special channels for them. For example, following the success of Pluto TV Anime, we created Pluto TV Anime Acci0n, aimed at an audience that consumes anime, but of a different kind, and Naruto, a channel 100% dedicated to one of the most popular series of the genre. Noticing a lot of interest in consuming real life cases, we were quickly able to launch channels like Pluto TV Misterios Medicos, Pluto TV Investiga, Archivos Forenses, The New Detectives, and Misterios sin resolver.

 In Latin America, we have run agreements with more than 100 content partners to create a library of more than 18 thousand hours of content.

 Leading content partners include the world’s leading TV networks, film studios, publishers and digital media companies. Some of them are: A2 Filmes, All3Media, BBC Studios, Big Media, Blue Ant Media, Caracol, Castalia, CDC International, Cineflix, Cisneros Media, Combate Americas, DRG, Endemol Shine, FilmRise, Fremantle, Glory Sports, Hard Knocks Fighting , Hearst, Impact Wrestling, Inverleigh, Kinpil, Latin Angels, Leda Films, Legendary Entertainment, Life Design, Lionsgate, Marvista, MPI Media, MTV, Nelvana, New Dominion, Nick Jr., Nickelodeon, Off The Fence, OTRO, Paramount, Polar Star, Pongalo, Sabbatical Entertainment, Samuel Goldwyn, Sonar Entertainment, Sony Pictures Television, Spanglish Movies, Telefe, Televix, The Asylum, TV Azteca, VIP 2000, Viz Media, Wildbrain and World Poker Tour.

 

What opportunities are offered to brands on Pluto TV? Which are the partners now involved with the platform and which are the ones ViacomCBS is planning to work with in the future?

 Pluto TV is a product that offers a genuinely clean, efficient and simple environment to reach all audiences. It is free, 100% legal, targetable by audiences and does not require any type of registration. For brands, it offers a 100% brand safe environment and a very attractive monetization scheme for its advertisers. It includes three types of advertising: programmatic, programming sponsors and direct advertising, which allows advertisers to optimize their investment and reach their target audience more efficiently.

 To date, we have already confirmed on Pluto TV Latin America agreements with Liverpool, Mercado Libre, DIRECTV, Movistar, Telecom, Unilever, Danone, and Renault as sponsors of the streaming service. And we keep adding.

 

What will be the main news for the launch of Pluto TV in Brazil? What differences will the catalog include in relation to the launch that already took place in the rest of the countries in the region, and with which Brazilian partners is ViacomCBS working?

 Upon launch in December, Pluto TV Brasil will feature 24 linear channels and 3 pop-up channels developed especially for the end of the year festivities. Pluto TV Brasil will offer a variety of programming specifically selected for the region, which will include hit TV series, award-winning films and a wide range of genres including reality, anime, lifestyle, competition, nature, crime, documentaries and children content.

 In addition, Pluto TV will offer a solid library of films for the Brazilian audience, with classic franchises such as Star Trek and Sherlock Holmes, Blue Jasmine, PS: Eu Te Amo, Trocando os Pés and Crô. It will also feature a variety of shows like Taboo, Jeannie é um G’nio, Teen Mom, Papito in Love, and hit anime like Naruto Shippuden and Bleach. Kenan & Kell, CatDog, Rugrats: Crescidos, As Pistas da Blue and Jelly Jamm are some of the outstanding titles for children.

 

What new projects are being developed for Pluto TV in Latin America?

We continue to strengthen the platform and create alliances with the most important partners in order to offer variety and quality of content for all audiences, while at the same time we enter more devices so that audiences can access Pluto TV from all existing devices.

 

What can you reflect about the AVOD platforms ‘boom’ that is taking place in Latin America?

Since the beginning of the year we have had an impressive growth. Digital evolution is very fast. In digital, it was key to transform us quickly. Latin America is expected to be the second fastest growing streaming market in proportion of users until 2025, doubling its user base between 2019 and 2024. Entertainment app downloads grow at double numbers quarter-over-quarter; the increase in streaming consumption is almost 200%; ad sales on AVOD, unlike linear TV, grew. Only in 2020, Latin America will end the year with 36% more streaming users compared to 2019, totaling 62.2 million. *

 To sum up, content consumption is growing faster than ever, and AVOD’s platforms that offer quality content, in safe, legal and easy-to-consume environments, for free, show a great complement to other existing streaming services.

 We have a great opportunity, and Pluto TV is the pioneer service in the region in offering an ideal ecosystem to access quality content for free, in exchange for advertising. This has become a really attractive offer  for all types of audiences.

 * Data belongs to Ampere Analysis