There is more speculation today on possible changes in the streaming sector, with Stan facing the potential loss of US content deals and the possibility of a new levy on players such as Netflix.
Disney and CBS-owned Showtime are big suppliers to Stan but with Disney+ expected to launch and CBS All Access now in Australia, The Australian reports Stan is set to face its sternest test with new competition.
Efforts have been under way to find an equity or content partner for Nine-owed Stan in a bid to see it through what is shaping as a period of dramatic change in the market, that could include some consolidation of the local players.
Costs to acquire programs for aggregators such as Stan are expected to rise from here as production houses such as Disney, HBO and CBS pull content back from licencing partners to establish their own “channel” offerings.
There is chatter Stan has already been advised it will lose Disney content, but nothing has been confirmed.
Meanwhile newly-installed Communications Minister Paul Fletcher has indicated the Morrison government could support a new levy on digital video streamers to make up for lost revenue streams from struggling traditional broadcasters.
It follows ongoing grievances from broadcasters and producers about the lack of local content obligations in streaming.
“You try and have the most consistent approach between different users of that asset. So I can find myself saying I think a principle of competitive neutrality is a very desirable thing,” he told The Australian.
“The more you can have companies that are in the same market subject to broadly the same set of regulatory requirements and obligations the better.”
Last week Netflix was reportedly setting up a Sydney-based team of around 10 staff.