Fox Streamer Tubi Seeks to Replicate its U.S. Success in UK

Fox Corporation’s ad-supported video-on-demand streaming service Tubi is launching in the United Kingdom with a content library of 20,000 movies and TV shows. With almost 80 million monthly active users, Tubi has grown quickly in the U.S. since its debut on the Nielsen Gauge just over a year ago and it is exporting the formula overseas. The new UK service will rely primarily on content from companies including Disney, Lionsgate, NBCUniversal and Sony Pictures Entertainment, as well Tubi Originals, arthouse fare and films from Bollywood and Nigeria, known as “Nollywood.”

“The expansion— which had been touted last year when it hired the UK-based ex-Endeavor exec David Salmon as head of international — comes at a time of impressive audience figures, with Tubi now the fastest growing U.S. streaming service,” writes Variety, quoting Tubi CEO Anjali Sud saying that “outside of North America, this is a big one.”

Sud feels that younger and multicultural audiences in particular have been underserved by the UK’s leading free streaming services, the BBC and ITV, and sees an opportunity to cater to that group.

“Similar to the U.S., there’s been a natural need to revert to the median, to focus on mass appeal, and that’s very hard when you have such a diverse melting pot of a country, with incredibly diverse tastes and perspectives,” she told Variety.

“We believe that we can build a brilliantly broad, culturally ambitious offering that puts UK audiences back at the center, and makes it fun and easy to enjoy great entertainment from around the world,” Salmon said in Tubi’s announcement.

In the U.S., Tubi is on a roll, with Nielsen proclaiming May its most-watched month ever, up 46 percent year-over-year, with an average audience of 1 million viewers. That pushed it ahead of “fellow free streamers the Roku Channel and Pluto TV,” Variety writes, noting that “it now sits behind only YouTube’s viewers in the free ad-supporting streaming world.”

For those who aren’t familiar with Tubi or AVOD, “you do have to put up with adverts, not only before you start watching a movie or show but also throughout, much like you would when watching live TV,” TechRadar reports. “The good news is that the adverts are pretty short.”

Tubi Launches in UK Bidding to Attract Fandoms & Communities, Deadline, 7/1/24

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