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Vivendi shutters Watchever; broadcasters plan 'Russian Hulu'


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Vivendi shutters Watchever; broadcasters plan 'Russian Hulu'


*Vivendi SA's Germansubscription video-on-demand service Watchever will operations on Dec. 31 due to stiffcompetition, Broadband TV News reports,citing sources familiar with the matter. The move will affect the company's 17Berlin-based employees, while 100 Paris and Marseille-based workers willreportedly move to a new project involving VOD and mobile services for Europeand Latin America.

* FirstChannel, JSC Gazprom-MediaHolding, VGTRK, National Media Group and are working together to launchan online streaming platform in Russia similar to Hulu LLC, Broadband TV News reports,citing Kommersant. The five Russianbroadcasters are reportedly committed to developing the platform and areexpected to make their decision by September. Hulu is a joint venture of theWalt Disney Co.,21st Century Fox Inc.and Comcast's NBCUniversal Media.


* U.K.telecom regulator Ofcom will reveal a radical restructure of 's infrastructure unitOpenreach on July 26, but will stop short of a full , The Daily Telegraph (London) reports.Ofcom will also propose tough new service targets and reforms to Openreach's£1.4 billion cash flow.

*British MPs claim that government ministers appear to have no interest inpursuing a full privatization of public broadcaster , The Guardian (London) reports.However, other options such as part-privatization were reportedly believed toremain on the table.

*Viacom Inc.'sChannel 5 (UK)is preparing the launch of a free-to-air channel inspired by its on-demandcatch-up platformMy5, Broadcast reports.The channel will replace Channel 5+24 and will debut on Freeview, Freesat andpay TV platforms in August.

*Former BBC WorldwideLtd. CEO David Gibbons joined Comcast Corp.'s NBCUniversal Media LLC as senior vice president ofinternational operations and technology, Digital TV Europe reports.The British BroadcastingCorp. has yet to find a replacement for Gibbons.


*Vodafone Group Plc'sVodafone Germany launched Vodafone Smart 7 Platinum, a company-brandedsmartphone, Telecompaper reports.Among the 4G device's features are a 5.5-inch Quad HD screen, an octa-coreprocessor and 4K recording support.

* The sudden, accidental death of German internet company Unisterboss Thomas Wagner continues to baffle authorities, Handelsblatt reports.A prosecutor in Dresden, Germany, is now reportedly looking intothe case over fraud and breach of trust claims.

* Thomas Fischer is the new head of factual entertainment atproduction firm Warner Bros. International Television Production, Kress reports.The Time Warner Inc.unit, previously known as Eyeworks, is headquartered in Amsterdam.

*French video game developer Gameloft ended its lawsuit against Vivendi after itwas purchased by the French media company in a hostile takeover, Les Echos reports.The president of France's stock market regulator, Gérard Rameix, said Vivendihad "discovered a trick no one anticipated" and has promised the AMFit will ensure a similar case does not happen again.

* TheHigh Court of Paris ruled against France's Syndicat National de l'ÉditionPhonographique, accordingto Le Figaro. The organization, whichprotects the interests of the French record industry, was calling forMicrosoft Corp. andAlphabet Inc.'sGoogle Inc. to purgethe word "torrent" from their respective search engines in order tohelp combat illegal downloading.

*Bangladesh telecom regulator BTRC plans to borrow €157 million from HSBC inorder to complete the manufacture of its first satellite, The Daily Star (Bangladesh) reports.French aerospace manufacturer Thales Alenia Space signed a $248 millioncontract with the BTRC to design, assemble and launch the Bangabandhu-1, whichis expected to provide services to all South Asian countries, as well asseveral others.


*The uproar about FOX Sport's new distribution agreements in the Netherlands,including KPN NV's alawsuit against the channel, is caused by FOX's plans for a football channel inthe basic TV package, TotaalTV reports.Multiple providers reportedly disagree with these plans, as they will lead to asubstantial price increase of the basic package subscription, affectingcustomers not interested in the football channel as well.

*Customers of KPN's online TV service KPN Play now have access to a secondstream and can use the app on two devices simultaneously, Mediamagazine reports.Customers can watch KPN Play with every Dutch internet connection; a KPNinternet subscription is not required.


* is considering aplan to produce and deliver its own content, Dagens Industri reports.Per Borgklint, group chief innovation officer and head of media business unit,reportedly said content will likely be part of a longer-term strategy ratherthan an immediate goal.

*Taiwan mobile network carrier Taiwan Mobile Co. Ltd (TWM) saidthat it signed amemorandum of understanding with Nokia Corp. to develop a 5G experimental network. TWMpredicts that Taiwan will officially roll out 5G networks in 2020.

*Ericsson's U.S. subsidiary Telcordia Inc. reportedly outbid local rival Neustarto win a $1 billion number-portability administration center contract awardedby the Federal Communications Commission, DagensIndustri reports.The database will manage communications between over 650 million Americanmobile phone numbers and 2,000 carriers.

*Lifesum AB's latest round of funding values the personal health app maker at400 million Swedish kronor, Di Digital reports.Lifesum raised 85 million Swedish kronor in its new funding round in whichNokia Growth Partners and Draper Esprit participated.


* broadcaster Atresmedia launched itsinternational channels Antena 3 and Atreseries in the U.K., via unitVirgin Media Inc.,Broadband TV News reports.The channels will be added to Virgin Media's Spanish Viva package, and marksAtresmedia's first foray in the British pay TV market.

*Greece's Forthnet SA rebranded all of its services under theNova brand, its payTV arm, Telecompaper reports.Forthnet's broadband and telephony offers can now be found on the Nova.grwebsite, while all Forthnet shops will also adopt the Nova brand, according tothe report.

*MasMovil Ibercom SA and OrangeEspaña are planning to partner on a new fiber-to-the-home networkin Spain, Telecompaper reports.The planned deal is part of the Orange SA unit's required concessions for its of in 2015.

*Spanish communications watchdog CNMC wants a price reduction of 10% to 34%regarding Telefónica SA'swholesale network access charge to rivals, Telecompaper reports.The proposal, which will be included in a public consultation, will alsoreportedly cover eight submarine cable routes such as those connecting theCanary and Balearic Islands with the Spanish autonomous city of Ceuta.


*Polish competition watchdog UOKiK launched a probe on Polkomtel, 's T-MobilePoland and OrangePolska regarding the storage of recorded customer service calls,Telecompaper reports.Customers of said operators currently cannot request a copy of their recordedcustomer service call, which would put them at a disadvantage in case of legaldisputes, according to the report.

*Cyfrowy Polsat SA isoffering a download function for its new ipla video-on-demand app, in order toallow offline viewing, Telecompaper reports.The app is available for iOS users, according to the report.


: SamsungElectronics filed a lawsuit against Huawei Technologies claiming infringementof its smartphone patents, while U.S. lawsuits to seize assets allegedly stolenfrom Malaysian state fund 1MDB include targeting proceeds from the film"The Wolf of Wall Street."

: Media analysts weigh in on how Roger Ailes' resignationwill impact FOX News and its parent.

: The Republican National Conventiondominated headlines during the week ended July 22, but for media andcommunications investors all eyes were on earnings reports.

: The 2015 paypackage of Liberty Media President and CEO Gregory Maffei is among thosehighlighted in the latest installment of The Pay Check.

: S&P Global Market Intelligencepresents a roundup of recent programming announcements from variousinternational networks and online video platforms.

: People who thoughtthey knew what to expect from the combination of Charter and Time Warner Cablemay have been wrong.

: MeetMe's short interest surged inthe second half of June, propelling the company to the top of the list of newmedia short interest gainers.

: TRONC saw the biggest growth in shortinterest among media and entertainment companies measured by SNL Kagan in thesecond half of June.

: As an increasingnumber of companies are harnessing social media as an essential product forcustomer relationship management, S&P Global Market Intelligence sat down withJoshua March, founder & CEO of Conversocial.


Economics of TV& Film: Netflix sub growth misses mark in Q2: Netflix releasedits second-quarter results, and the world's leading provider online videocontent missed the mark in its projected subscriber growth for the quarter.

Amanda Kelly,Anne Freier, Koen Pijnappels and Gerard O'Dwyer contributed to this report. TheDaily Dose has an editorial deadline of 7 a.m. London time. Some external linksmay require a subscription.