French startup Molotov offers OTT TV streaming service in France with live TV, premium channels, cloud DVRs and on-demand content. Although the service has managed to attract 13 million users in France, it is yet to expand to other countries.
Molotov is starting its international expansion this year on a roadmap with a dozen countries. First, the service will be available in seven African countries, starting in Ivory Coast where it already is, Senegal in January, Cameroon in February, Burkina Faso in March, Tunisia in April, followed by Guinea and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
“When it comes to features, the service is more or less the same but the content is different,” Jean-David Blanc, co-founder and CEO, told me. Molotov is betting on local partnerships to launch his service in new countries.
In today’s case, Molotov is partnering with Digital Kanya, a mobile payment company available in 40 countries. Digital Kanye is handling relationships with local content owners. Molotov is looking after operations and the tech stack.
There will be 15 channels at launch, such as Nina TV, Passion TV, Tres Urban, Tres Africa, Tres Urban Africa, Savannah TV, Gametoon, AfricanNews, Euronews, France 24, Tres Sport Stars and DocuBox. Molotov will provide access to its ad-supported on-demand streaming service Mango.
To support its international expansion plans, the startup had to remodel its infrastructure so that it is more robust – it relies more on cloud hosting and it is partnering with CDN companies. For example, the service should work better if you do not have the same bandwidth as before.
And this is only a start as Molotov is already in talks with various B2B partners in Asia, South America and Europe. “Our strategy is to rely on local players to launch Molotov in new countries,” Blanc said. So you can expect more news on the international front with new countries and new allies.