Ahead of its expansion, Netflix finds partners, foes in Europe

Gigaom

It will likely be another three months until Netflix’s next major expansion into continental Europe, but the streaming video service is already making new friends and enemies in the targeted countries.

Netflix is in the process of striking a partnership with Deutsche Telekom, according to a report by Germany’s Manager Magazin. Telekom apparently wants to carry Netflix on its IPTV platform, which is dubbed Entertain. This would mirror similar partnerships the streaming service has with other pay TV operators — with one notable difference: This could be the first time Netflix is available on a pay TV set-top box of a major operator that’s not based on TiVo’s DVR hardware.

But not everyone is looking to align themselves with Netflix. Austrian public broadcaster ORF has acquired a stake in the local video service Filmmit, according to Austria’s Kurier (hat tip to Broadband TV News). ORF wants to use Filmmit, which is currently based on a transactional model, to build a platform that could be monetized through advertising and subscriptions, but there is a chance that regulators could block those plans.

Netflix announced in May that it will expand to Germany, France, Switzerland, Austria, Belgium and Luxembourg later this year. The company hasn’t said yet when exactly it intends to launch in those markets, but it is assumed that the launch will likely happen in early September.

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