Canal Plus has named Raphaël De Andréis as deputy director-general in charge of pay TV activities and Ara Aprikian as deputy director-general in charge of free TV.De Andréis, who was previously president of Havas-owned BETC Euro RSCG, where he advised Canal Plus and CanalSat on communications strategy, will take charge of the broadcaster’s premium and thematic channels. Aprikian, who previously worked in a number of roles for TF1, before taking a senior editorial role with Canal Plus in 2005, will look after Canal Plus’s free-to-air windows, news channel i>Télé and Bolloré’s Direct 8 and Direct Star channels, subject to regulatory approval of the latter’s acquisition.Both will report to Rodolphe Belmer, deputy director general, editorial, at Canal Plus Group and director-general, editorial, at Canal Plus France.
Belgacom will legally change its name to Proximus later this month, having grouped all products and services under the commercial brand in September.Belgacom said that it is speeding up its Proximus rebrand after witnessing positive customer response to the name. The company will be known as Proximus SA under public law effective June 22. Its stockmarket ticker symbol will become PROX instead of BELG from June 19.“In the days and weeks following the commercial rebranding, the response from customers, suppliers, stakeholders, investors and employees was unanimously positive,” said Belgacom in a statement.“That is why the decision was taken to speed up the rebranding of Belgacom SA under public law to Proximus SA under public law. At the same time this also simplifies communication.”Belgacom’s general assembly first decided to change the company name under public law to Proximus SA on 15 April 2015.
Netflix reported a record number of new subscribers in Q1, but its share price dropped more than 7% in after-hours trading after it issued a weak forecast for the current quarter.Netflix said it expects to add 2.5 million members in the second quarter of 2016 – 2.0 million internationally and 500,000 in the US. By comparison, in Q2 2015 it added 2.4 million international members and 900,000 in the US – a total of 3.3 million.The SVOD service said that its Q2 US forecast was in line with previous years, but acknowledged a “modest impact from un-grandfathering” – the process of upping legacy users’ price plans from an introductory US$7.99 or US$8.99 per month to Netflix’s now standard US$9.99 for its HD, two-screen plan.Currently more than half of Netflix US users pay a reduced rate for its US$9.99 offering – something that Netflix said it will phase out gradually over the remainder of 2016.Internationally, Netflix said that it expects to add less users in Q2 2016 than a year earlier due to a “tough comparison against the Australia/New Zealand launch”.“The ANZ growth spike in Q2 last year resulted in international Q2 net adds more than doubling year over year (from 1.12 million to 2.37 million). While ANZ is growing steadily this Q2, it is less than the launch spike last year,” said Netflix in its quarterly letter to shareholders.Netflix said that its launch in 130 new countries at the beginning of this year meant that its Q1 results “captured the initial surge of sign-ups”, with net additions expected to drop sequentially in Q2 as a result.Announcing its Q1 2016 results, Netflix said that it added a record 6.74 million subscribers in the quarter – up from 4.88 million in Q1 2015.The bulk of these additions were international users, with 2.23 million new members logged in the US – down slightly from the 2.28 million new members recorded in Q1 2015.International revenues grew 57% year-on-year to US$652 million. International losses widened year-on-year to a loss of US$104 million – though Netflix said that this was “better than forecast due to the timing of content spend”.In the US, Netflix’s revenues rose 18% year-on-year to US$1.16 billion. It attributed this to 14% growth in average paid memberships and a 3% increase in ARPU. US contribution profit grew 32% year-on-year to US$413 million.