Amazon to air a fashion show
Amazon.com’s (AMZN) Prime Instant Video service has been positively embraced by Amazon Prime members and has seen high adoption and retention rates for Prime subscribers—in part, perhaps, because Amazon has also been expanding the Prime Instant Video service offerings.
Earlier this month, The Wall Street Journal reported that Amazon’s Prime Instant Video service will air a fashion show, Style Code Live, daily on the Amazon website. The fashion show will “showcase goods it wants customers to buy” on the Amazon website and will also offer makeup and beauty tips, in a bid by Amazon to sell beauty products on its website. The show would be “free to all” and would be a departure from Amazon’s policy of making its original content available only to members of its $99 per year Prime membership program.
During 4Q15, Amazon doubled the number of global Prime members as well as the viewing hours of Prime Video on a YoY (year-over-year) basis. This progress from Amazon is bound to challenge the leadership of Netflix (NFLX) in the online streaming market.
Amazon’s other initiatives
Amazon has taken a number of other initiatives as well to grow its Prime Instant Video service. Late last year, Amazon announced its Streaming Partners Program, an OTT (over-the-top) streaming subscription program. Under this program, Amazon partnered with around 20 media companies, including CBS (CBS) Showtime, Starz, and the A&E Network. The Streaming Partners Program provides viewers with free trial subscriptions for all of its streaming partners.
Amazon is also producing original content and has signed Woody Allen to direct Amazon’s first exclusive television series in 2016. Amazon has also entered into content licensing deals with Viacom (VIAB) and HBO (TWX). Meanwhile, Prime Instant Video appears to be following in Netflix’s footsteps by entering international markets such as Japan (EWJ) and by pursuing original content.
Notably, Amazon makes up 5.4% of the PowerShares QQQ Trust Series 1 ETF (QQQ), which has an exposure of 4.7% to the TV sector.
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