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Amazon's content expansion; KKR, Hyperoptic deal; Huawei in Germany


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Amazon's content expansion; KKR, Hyperoptic deal; Huawei in Germany


* Inc. is looking to expand its original production in various markets, including in Europe, Digital TV Europe reports, citing statements from Amazon Studios international originals head James Farrell and European originals director Georgia Brown. Amazon will expand outside its existing European markets, such as the U.K., Germany, Italy and Spain.

* KKR & Co. Inc. acquired a majority stake in British gigabit broadband operator Hyperoptic Ltd. for an undisclosed amount. The investment firm, through KKR Global Infrastructure Investors III LP, purchased the stake from funds managed by Newlight Partners LP and Abu Dhabi state fund Mubadala Investment Co., according to S&P Global Market Intelligence data.

* Germany will not ban any vendor, including Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd., in the 5G network buildout projects in the country, Reuters reports. Germany's security catalog, which includes details on suppliers for 5G networks, is due to be published soon.

* The European Commission is chairing a meeting Oct. 15 for tech firms and publishers impacted by its controversial copyright reforms. Officially approved in April, the updated rules give producers greater control over the use of their content online as well as fairer royalties for authors and performers.


* The hearing for Google LLC's appeal on the European Commission's €4.34 billion fine will take place on Feb. 12 to Feb. 14, 2020, Reuters reports, citing Kelkoo Group Ltd. CEO Richard Stables. Alphabet Inc. owns Google.

* The European Commission will look into whether Hungary's plans to grant about €108 million to Samsung SDI Co. Ltd. for the expansion of its battery cell production facility in Göd in Hungary meets EU rules on regional state aid. The EC said it "has doubts" whether the planned grant meets all the criteria of the regional aid guidelines.


* Germany IT consultancy Cancom SE is acquiring Belfast-based IT service provider Novosco Ltd. for an undisclosed sum. In addition to the deal, Novosco co-founder and Sales Director John Lennon will become joint managing director of Cancom's U.K. unit.

* Hutchison 3G UK Ltd. unit Three Wholesale struck a long-term strategic tie-up with communications-as-a-service provider Pareteum Corp., Total Telecom reports. The deal will allow Pareteum to offer new mobile products and internet-of-things services on Three's U.K. network.

* British telecom regulator Ofcom slapped a £900,000 fine on KCOM Group PLC, after the telco's failure to ensure consumers are able to access its emergency call service. KCOM informed Ofcom that its emergency call service covering the Hull area did not work over a four-hour period on Dec. 28, 2015.

* The U.K. government will propose a law to make it easier for telecom companies to install digital infrastructure in rented homes, Queen Elizabeth II said in a speech to the Houses of Parliament. The Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Bill will apply when landlords ignore repeated requests for access, a background note on the legislation said.

* The natural history unit of British Broadcasting Corp. unit BBC Studios promoted Gavin Boyland to the role of head of development. Boyland produces content for the BBC and the independent sector.


* German operator freenet AG is still against Sunrise Communications Group AG's proposed acquisition of Liberty Global PLC unit UPC Schweiz, despite the cable giant's offer to invest up to CHF500 million in a rights issuance to help fund the deal, Reuters reports. Freenet owns almost a quarter of Sunrise's total share capital.

* ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE subsidiary 7Sports acquired the remaining 50% stake in esports GSA GmbH. News portal will now become a 100%-owned subsidiary of 7Sports.

* Sunrise announced the launch of the 5G Joint Innovation Center in Europe, built together with Huawei. The two companies will work together to research and develop 5G applications for private and business sectors.

* German newspaper WirtschaftsWoche will become a business online magazine, Editor-in-Chief Beat Balzli told Meedia. The company will continue to support its freemium model.

* German cable marketing organization Deutsche Netzmarketing is launching three ultra HD music channels by Stingray Group Inc. for the German audience, Infosat reports.


* British adventurer Bear Grylls is launching his own production company under Banijay Group SAS, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The production company, to be called The Natural Studios, will create Grylls' signature unscripted adventure series and develop scripted content.

* Canal Plus SA unit Canal+ International and Mediawan SA are partnering to produce a joint venture to produce original and exclusive content in French for audiences in the 25 African countries where Canal Plus Group operates. This new structure will be managed by Mediawan and the first project is a popular daily drama serial.

* Altice France SA's SFR presented its plan for fiber deployment in Haute-Provence Pays de Banon and Alpes de Haute-Provence, where 114,550 households, businesses and public institutions will have access to fiber by the end of 2022. The investment to establish this network is €180 million.


* Vivendi SA withdrew summary proceedings against Mediaset SpA and Mediaset España Comunicación SA's merger, which was filed with an Amsterdam court, Reuters reports, citing two sources.

* Proact IT Group AB acquired Dutch IT managed services provider PeopleWare. The acquisition is expected to help Proact grow its managed cloud services offerings targeted at medium-sized enterprises.

* Amdocs Ltd., a provider of software and services to communications and media companies, will provide Dutch operator VodafoneZiggo with its Amdocs Network Function Virtualization solution to enable Dutch enterprises to design, deploy and monitor virtual cloud networks on-demand.

* Gent-based tracking system developer Pozyx NV signed a partnership with the Europa Hockey League, in a deal where Pozyx will use its technology to track movement to enable trainers, players and hockey fans to gain real-time insight into the game, De Tijd reports.


* German company Beta Film GmbH acquired a majority stake in Finnish film and production company Fisher King Production Oy. Beta Film also launched Beta Nordic Studios, which will be based in Sweden. Beta Nordic Studios will serve as an umbrella for Beta Film's production activities in Scandinavia, including those of Fisher King.

* Finland's transport ministry wants mobile network operators DNA Oyj, Elisa Oyj and Telia Co. AB to upgrade their 4G signals along all passenger rail routes, Yle reports. Talks on how to achieve enhanced 4G coverage will begin with state rail group VR in the coming months.

* InCoax Networks AB secured an original design manufacturer deal to increase production capacity and expand its modem portfolio. The agreement to raise production was signed with a new and undisclosed ODM partner. InCoax said the deal will enable it to meet rising demand.

* Telenor ASA rolled out a 5G pilot project in the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard in Norway. The pilot will test new standards against Arctic weather and extreme cold climate.

* Ericsson plans to produce 5G radio products in India for domestic use and export, India's The Economic Times reports, citing Nunzio Mirtillo, senior vice president and head of market area Southeast Asia, Oceania and India at Ericsson.


* Vodafone Italia SpA formed a subsidiary named Vodafone Towers Srl, which will carry its portfolio of 10,977 sites in Italy ahead of the Vodafone Group PLC unit's merger with Telecom Italia SpA's tower unit Infrastrutture Wireless Italiane SpA, Telecompaper reports, citing Radiocor.

* ITV PLC unit ITV Studios Ltd. and Atresmedia Studios teamed up to co-develop a new game show called "Trust Me I'm A Six-Year-old." Possessed, an ITV Studios label, collaborated with the Atresmedia unit for the creation of the new format.

* Greek free-to-air channel Alpha TV ordered a minimum of 150 one-hour episodes of physical game show "Catchpoint" from ITV Studios Global Entertainment. The agreement between the companies now prompt the launch of the game show in Greece following its earlier launch in Hungary on TV2.

* GEDI Gruppo Editoriale SpA rebuffed businessman Carlo De Benedetti's offer to acquire a 30% stake in the Italian publisher from his three sons, Reuters reports. Benedetti's move is in line with his opinion that his sons had "neither the skills nor the passion required to be publishers," the report quoted the businessman as saying.


* Russian internet company Yandex NV launched a short video app called Sloy. The app is focused on fashion and style, and lets users create short videos with automatically recognized tags for clothing or footwear.

* Russia completed the transition of its national TV channels in 21 regions to digital terrestrial broadcasting from analog signals on Oct. 14, Broadband TV News reports, citing TASS. The country switched off analog signals in phases from Dec. 3, 2018, through June 3.

* 1+1 Media Group's Tet TV appointed Oksana Petryshyn as the acting general producer, Broadband TV News reports. Petryshyn is replacing Viktoria Levchenko, who became the head of 1+1 Production on Sept. 16.


M&A Replay: Cellnex buying Arqiva's telecom unit; Thoma Bravo to acquire cybersecurity firm: Cellnex Telecom SA agreed to purchase the telecom division of towers operator Arqiva Group Ltd., while private equity firm Thoma Bravo LLC will acquire U.K.-based cybersecurity company Sophos Group PLC.


Economics of Internet: Global Video, OTT Index: Kagan provides links to its video provider operational tracking and programming spreadsheets, video-on-demand and over-the-top library data and analysis, and over-the-top company and country reports.

Technology: Broadband CPE flat YOY, despite Q2'19 fiber growth: Second-quarter 2019 broadband customer premises equipment revenues dropped 8.3% sequentially, but were effectively flat at $2.21 billion on a year-over-year basis.

Anne Freier, Amanda Kelly, Charlotte van Hek and Gerard O'Dwyer contributed to this report.

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