Disney unveils international streaming brand 'Star'

Updated December 11, 2020

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San Francisco, Dec 11 (IANS) Disney has unveiled a new international streaming brand "Star" which will roll out in select markets in February 2021.

The new service builds on the successful launch of Disney+ Hotstar in India and Indonesia.

Star will launch in Europe and several other international markets on February 23 as a fully integrated part of Disney+, the company said on Thursday at its 2020 Investor Day.

It will have its own branded tile and a new collection of general entertainment series, movies, documentaries and more that will double the content catalogue available to Disney+ subscribers.

Disney said the Star brand will serve as home to thousands of hours of television and movies from Disney's creative studios, including Disney Television Studios, FX, 20th Century Studios, 20th Television, and more, enhanced by the addition of local programming from the regions where available.

In Latin America, to take advantage of the region's portfolio of live sporting events, the company will launch Star+ as a standalone streaming service.

During the Investor Day presentation, the company announced that, as of December 2, its portfolio of direct-to-consumer services has exceeded a total of 137 million global paid subscriptions.

These include 11.5 million ESPN+ subscribers, 38.8 million Hulu subscribers, and 86.8 million Disney+ subscribers since its launch in November 2019.

"The tremendous success we've achieved across our unique portfolio of streaming services, with more than 137 million subscriptions worldwide, has bolstered our confidence in our acceleration toward a DTC (direct-to-consumer)-first business model," said Bob Chapek, Chief Executive Officer, The Walt Disney Company.

"With our amazing creative teams and our ever-growing collection of the high-quality branded entertainment that consumers want, we believe we are incredibly well positioned to achieve our long-term goals."

The company now expects its streaming services to hit 300-350 million total subscriptions by fiscal 2024, driven primarily by a significant increase in content output.

Disney+ alone is targeting to release more than 100 titles per year.

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