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SEOUL, July 14 (Yonhap) -- South Korean streaming services Tving and Seezn will merge into a single platform to become the biggest domestic content streaming provider, the companies announced Thursday.
KT Studio Genie, the media production unit of telecom operator KT Corp., said in a regulatory filing that it has struck a deal with CJ ENM Co., the controlling shareholder of Tving Co., to merge the two services.
The decision was reached to "strengthen the over-the-top (OTT) platform competitiveness within the domestic media and contents industry, and accelerate the growth of K-contents," KT Studio Genie said.
Tving also confirmed the deal in a separate regulatory filing. According to the deal, Seezn will be absorbed by Tving. South Korean entertainment giant CJ ENM owns a 57 percent of stake in Tving, which was spun off in October 2020 and operates as a separate entity.
Industry watchers have largely anticipated the merger deal, especially after CJ ENM and KT Studio Genie agreed to cooperate in an array of entertainment fields earlier this year. CJ also invested around 100 billion won (US$76 million) in KT's production unit in March.
When completed, the merger will create South Korea's biggest domestic OTT service provider with more than 5 million total subscribers, surpassing that of the country's current biggest platform Wavve at 4.23 million. U.S. streaming giant Netflix Inc. has some 11.2 million subscribers in South Korea.
Tving CEO Yang Ji-eul said the company aims to become the world's No. 1 K-content platform by utilizing the "content production infrastructure and communication technology of both companies."
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