Just a few months back, Canal+ decided to change from its strategy of only diffusing its content line via their own player to developing a Canal+ ecosystem on YouTube by launching 16 of its own channels. Now they seem to have changed course yet again, announcing that they have bought a 60% stake in Studio Bagel, the #1 YouTube channel in France.
Studio Bagel is one of the big success stories for YouTube’s channel format. Having only launched a couple of years ago in 2012, the comedy focused Studio Bagel already has 1.4 million subscribers and 109 million video views.
Before deciding to invest, Canal+ actually tested the waters with Studio Bagel having them create two YouTube Canal+ channel shows, «Les Tutos» and « Le Dézapping du Before ». According to Rodolphe Bermer head of Canal+, it was really Studio Bagels’ ability to create new talent and, obviously, quality content. He sees Studio Bagel fitting in perfectly at Canal+, working to create unique, quality content for Canal+’s range of channels.
Given the impending arrival of Netflix who have recently seen incredible success in the States from the creation of their own content, it makes perfect sense that for Canal+ quality content that lends itself to a premium offer is key. Interestingly, Belmer doesn’t see necessarily see Netflix as a direct competitor as he views that Netflix’s price, at approximately 10 euros/month is a little expensive vs what Canal+ offers and, obviously, the unique content Netflix develops is targeted towards the US-market. However, he still anticipates that it is imperative that they develop customized, quality content for a French audience. Given this strategy, production studios like Studio Bagels will have a bright future in front of them at Canal+.