Shout! Factory Launches A Streaming Service With A Keen Eye On “Self-Preservation”

Written By kom nampuldu on Kamis, 05 Februari 2015 | 20.49

Shout! Factory has long been held in high esteem for their efforts to shine a light on segments of pop culture that large media corporations had inexplicably relegated to the shadows. The company, which was founded back in 2003 by a trio of Rhino Records ex-pats, has long been a favorite of collectors of cult classic films and television programs; their DVD, Blu-ray and digital reissues have run the genre gamut and included such beloved (and diverse!) titles as Freaks & Geeks, My Little Pony and Father Knows Best.

Today, Shout! Factory is boldly launching into the streaming arena with the launch of their brand new (and free!) site, ShoutFactoryTV.com. There, viewers will be able watch a wide range of programming, including critically-adored television series (It's Garry Shandling's Show, Hill Street Blues), comedy specials, cult classics (Mystery Science Theater 3000), a slew of awesome movies (Ginger Snaps! Hoop Dreams!), and more. Decider spoke to Shout! co-founder Garson Foos and VP of Digital Gene Pao earlier this week about the site and the kind of thinking led them to decide that now was the right time invest in this highly competitive arena.

"Self-preservation, I think," Foos said with a chuckle. "We've been trying to expand our digital business for several years, and doing it largely through acquiring digital rights to more good content and distributing it through third parties like Netflix, and iTunes and Hulu and Amazon. [With the launch of Shout! TV], we can now take content that maybe those other third parties aren't as excited about as we are, and as we know certain consumer groups will be. We'll be able to prioritize it and turn it into a good experience for people to watch."

"Netflix is taking less and less older content, and same with Amazon," Foos explained. "That's one of the reasons we think there's good opportunity with us. You're not going to find many Mystery Science Theater 3000 episodes, for example, anymore on Netflix or Amazon Prime."

To that end, Shout! Factory has partnered with Hulu, who will be powering a good chunk of the video experience on ShoutFactoryTV.com. "We've had a long-standing relationship with Hulu," Pao relayed. "They provide a really good video platform, and they're also able to monetize the video views pretty well. So what we do is we bring those titles in where they can, but on ShoutFactoryTV we will also have a lot of titles that are not available on Hulu platform, including a lot of titles available on the mobile browser."

Being able to adequately monetize their digital ventures is, as you'd expect, a key reason that Shout seems to be willing to open themselves up to potentially cannibalizing their retail sales with this new streaming platform. "There is some [cannibalization], no doubt," Foos admitted. "Our physical business is still, by far, the biggest revenue generator for us. There are still a lot of people out there that want DVDs, and we're going to try and keep that business going as long as we can."

That said, Shout! Factory is optimistic about their revenue prospects that will come from streaming. "By the second year, we'll be at a $5MM/yr revenue run rate, and then basically aim to double that year-to-year," Foos said. "In five years, this could be a $15 to $20 million dollar business for us. And hopefully our overall business remains a lot bigger than that, but that would be a really nice valuable add-on for us to generate that kind of business in this area."

Shout! Factory isn't throwing caution to the wind entirely, though, in pursuit of digital success. They're going to play it cautiously with their windowing strategy at the outset—they'll mainly be "putting up things that have seen better days as far as DVD sales have gone," Foos told us—but they feel like some of the series that they hold licensing rights to will actually perform better for them on streaming than it did on physical media.

"I'm hopeful that things like the TV show Fridays—which we had put out on DVD, but was a bit disappointing on DVD sales—it feels to me like the kind of thing that online, where you don't have to pay for it," Foos confessed.

Pao added, "For the casual fan—Fridays could be a good example there—they might like the show enough to watch it, but they're not big enough fans to want to buy it. So it's a way to tap into that audience that are still interested in it, but maybe aren't as committed enough to buy it."

The full ShoutFactoryTV.com site experience launched early this morning; go check it out when you get a chance and let us know what you think!

Full press release below!


SHOUT! FACTORY ANNOUNCES BRANDED
DIGITAL ENTERTAINMENT STREAMING SERVICE
SHOUT! FACTORY TV

Los Angeles – February 5, 2015 – Building on its commitment to innovation and excellence as a purveyor of pop culture, Shout! Factory, a leading multi-platform entertainment company, unveils today the launch of a branded digital entertainment service, SHOUT! FACTORY TV. The announcement was made today by Shout! Factory founders Richard Foos, Bob Emmer and Garson Foos.

Expanding upon Shout's strategy to further maximize the value of its cult movie and TV libraries across broadcast, VOD, satellite and telco distribution businesses, the development of SHOUT! FACTORY TV is an important step in broadening Shout's reach beyond traditional distribution platforms.

SHOUT! FACTORY TV is a premiere digital entertainment streaming service that brings timeless and contemporary cult favorites to pop culture fans. With a uniquely curated entertainment library, the channel offers an unrivaled blend of cult TV shows, movies, comedy, original specials and more – presenting an exciting entertainment alternative to major streaming services.

To view a video introduction to SHOUT! FACTORY TV, visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OsjdxqFthd4

To experience the streaming service, visit ShoutFactoryTV.com on your computer or through a mobile browser. Download the Shout! Factory TV app on Roku to watch through your television set.

Whether reliving childhood memories or discovering television series, movies and comedy specials for the first time, SHOUT! FACTORY TV will provide an immersive, high-quality viewing experience across a wide variety of screens and platforms, online at ShoutFactoryTV.com and on smartphone devices, tablets and connected TV, with an initial rollout on Roku.

SHOUT! FACTORY TV's programming leverages a distinctive library of pop culture-defining entertainment curated from Shout! Factory, Westchester Films, Timeless Media Group, Scream Factory, major studios, independent producers and other sources from around the world.

Discover and enjoy more than 2,500 hours of movies and full-length TV episodes available to watch for free on SHOUT! FACTORY TV. A sampling of titles available to viewers timed to the channel launch and coming soon include, but not limited to:

MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER 3000 (beginning with over 30 episodes)
HOME MOVIES animated comedy series
THE WEIRD AL SHOW
IT'S GARRY SHANDLING'S SHOW
FATHER KNOWS BEST
DENNIS THE MENACE
THE MANY LOVES OF DOBIE GILLIS
THE SAINT
FRIDAYS
Gerry Anderson collection (hand-picked episodes from Thunderbirds, Stingray, Captain Scarlet, Fireball XL5, Joe 90, and Supercar)
SECRET AGENT
KEVIN SMITH: SMODIMATIONS
Steve Martin Stand-Up Show Case, featuring STEVE MARTIN: COMEDY IS NOT PRETTY & STEVE MARTIN: WILD AND CRAZY GUY
MEL BROOKS: MAKE A NOISE
THE ERNIE KOVACS SHOW
Werner Herzog movie collection, featuring 16 acclaimed films and documentaries
Roger Corman's Cult Classics (select movie titles)
The Marx Brother's A NIGHT IN CASABLANCA
A ROOM WITH A VIEW (Oscar®-winning film by James Ivory)
DEATH OF A SALESMAN (Golden Globe® and Emmy® winning film by Volker Schlondorff)
HOOP DREAMS (A film by Steve James)
Award-winning films such as THE LONG VOYAGE HOME (John Wayne), THE STUNT MAN (Peter O'Toole, Steve Railsback, Barbara Hershey), STAGECOACH (John Wayne), Bruce Beresford's BREAKER MORANT (Jack Thompson), THE RULING CLASS (Peter O'Toole)

Multi-screen lifestyle users and consumers can easily discover and enjoy SHOUT! FACTORY TV's library of content by browsing film, TV, originals or via keyword search.
Key features include:
Highest quality video available for all titles
Free-to-consumer ad supported video
Original videos and special bonus behind-the-scenes featurettes
Live programming stunts, such as the Mystery Science Theater 3000 Turkey Day Marathon

Like what you see? Follow Decider on Facebook and Twitter to join the conversation, and sign up for our email newsletters to be the first to know about streaming movies and TV news!

[Photos: Everett Collection]


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