Russia’s Videomore Wants More: From Social TV Network To Hulu-like Streaming Service

Initially launched as a social TV network, Videomore now strides to become the Russian version of Hulu.

December 2010: CTC Media Inc. launched Videomore, a service providing with features such as chat and sharing through your TV set. Aside from these functionalities, Videomore also aired catch-up shows from CTC’s Domashniy and Peretz TV networks, but now they want more.

CTC Media Inc. confirmed that they’ve made a deal with RTL’s National Media Group (NMG). The purpose of this deal is to allow both parts air catch-up and archive shows from its channels – Ren TV and Channel 5.

It’s a great leap for Videomore, especially that they’ve claimed an average of 9 million monthly unique visitors for 2012’s first nine months. However, NMG’s Channel One – which is Russia’s top broadcast channel – is not included in the deal.

Viacheslav Sinadski – CTC’s strategy chief – said:

These two years have given us invaluable experience and a better understanding of the modern viewer’s demands. We have come to the conclusion that our future success depends on three factors:

1. the availability of high-quality new content

2. the ability to advertise on television

3. as well as the overall scale.

The first two criteria have always been at our disposal, but we can significantly expand the scale of our business only by attracting new strategic partners including media holdings, TV channels and copyright holders.

Whether this effort proves to be successful or not, remains to be seen, but the truth is that it wouldn’t be a surprise if the partnership will not bear fruit. For example, Project Kangaroo – the attempt of a British broadcaster to form a single JV portal – was crushed by regulators on grounds of advertising antitrust. Hopefully, this will not be the case of Videomore.