NBCUniversal and Roku are expanding their streaming relationship, adding to the roster of classic and nostalgia TV titles available on the Roku Channel.
The NBCU Global Distribution Studio library is backing a number of new channels launching today, including dedicated ones for Murder, She Wrote, Little House on the Prairie, Saved By The Bell and Bad Girls Club. The Universal Crime channel offers a rotation including Columbo, Kojak and The Rockford Files, while Teen NBC packages the likes of Punky Brewster, Major Dad and Hang Time.
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Additional offerings launching down the road include the Universal Action channel, featuring The A-Team, Magnum P.I. and Knight Rider; as well as Alfred Hitchcock Presents.
NBCU has already had Roku Channel distribution for NBC News Now, Dateline 24/7, Today All Day, LX, NBC local channels, Telemundo regional news channels, Sky News International, and The Rotten Tomatoes Channel. NBCU Global Distribution has also licensed select films, TV series and Telemundo programming to Roku.
Free, ad-supported television, or FAST, has boomed in recent years, becoming a multi-billion dollar sector and gaining even more momentum as media companies grapple with streaming’s challenging economics. While major players initially sought to retain exclusive rights to classic shows like Friends or The Office and position them as centerpieces of subscription services, there is now more willingness to license them more broadly, including on FAST.
The Roku Channel is distributed mainly to Roku’s 73.5 million active accounts and ended 2022 with reach to households with 100 million people, the streaming company estimates. Along with Roku devices and smart TVs, the channel is available on Amazon Fire TVs, Samsung TVs, Google TV and other Android TV OS devices.
“As FAST continues to gain incredible popularity in the marketplace, we’re excited to bring such terrific content options – including a strong roster of very well-known, fan-favorite programming – to our viewers,” said Jennifer Vaux, VP, Content Acquisition & Programming for The Roku Channel.
Bruce Casino, EVP, Sales & Distribution, U.S. for NBCUniversal Global Distribution, said the company is “excited to expand upon our longstanding relationship with The Roku Channel and dive into the dramatically growing FAST sector by partnering with them to bring our beloved TV shows to their viewers.”
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