x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Pay-TV merger kicks off with special offer

Showtime and Orbit subscribers will be able watch certain programmes from both networks for free until August.

Samir Abdulhadi, the vice chairman of the new company, reiterated that consumers should view the merger as a good thing.
Samir Abdulhadi, the vice chairman of the new company, reiterated that consumers should view the merger as a good thing.

Showtime and Orbit subscribers will be able watch certain programmes from both networks for free until August. For Orbit viewers, this will include English Premier League football games that are normally exclusively shown on Showtime. The expanded programming promotion, which went live last night, is an attempt to woo consumers following Sunday's announcement of a merger between the companies' pay-TV operations.

"That is the best illustration of this concept of simplicity and convenience," said Marc-Antoine d'Halluin, the chief executive of the newly formed company, which has yet to be named, and the president and chief executive of Showtime Arabia. "Rather than wait for several months for a benefit to our subscribers, we thought that we could make it happen faster. We are doing it, as soon as today, which, actually when you compare it to other mergers, is a world record."

Enhanced packages from the newly formed company will be available from August 1. As part of the month-long promotion, Orbit viewers will be able to watch five premium Showtime channels, including Showmovies 1, Showseries, Showcomedy, Showsports 3 and E! They will also receive live coverage of the English Premier League on Showsports 2 when the season kicks off on August 15. Showtime viewers will be able to watch Super Movies, America Plus and Super Comedy from the Orbit line-up.

khagey@thenational.ae