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Jordan’s Arab Telemedia preps SVoD service Hekaya+ for Arabic speakers worldwide

Jordan-based production and distribution group Arab Telemedia is planning to launch a subscription video-on-demand (SVoD) entertainment service called Hekaya+.

Talal Al-Awamleh

Targeting the 470 million Arabic-speaking population around the globe, Hekaya+ will offer a range of programmes including series, films and animation. The service will include subtitling to accommodate non-Arabic speakers and will be available via Apple and Android devices.

The platform is set to launch “in a few weeks,” according to Arab Telemedia, and will be available on a monthly subscription. The company has partnered with US-based Streann Media to provide the technology behind the service.

Hekaya+ will be joining a growing but congested SVoD market in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, with Netflix leading a pack that also includes StarzPlay, Shahid VIP, OSN, Amazon and Apple TV+.

Recent data from Digital TV Research forecast the number of SVoD subscribers in the region will reach 15 million across 13 MENA countries by 2026. This figure is up from 8.61 million in 2021, with Netflix reaching 5.4 million subs and OSN, backed by its Disney+ deal, reaching 2.6 million by that year.

Talal Al-Awamleh, CEO of Arab Telemedia, announced the news, saying: “This endeavour aims to take the Arabic entertainment industry to the next level by combining stellar content with premium technology.”

“Streaming platforms are the new normal and we are thrilled to bring new content experiences to the Middle East,” added Gio Punzo, CEO of Florida-based Streann. “By joining forces with Arab Telemedia Group, we are able to offer thousands of hours of entertainment to Arabic audiences. We are taking streaming to a whole new level.”

Arab Telemedia already operates a linear channel called Hekaya, among other services. Additionally, the 38-year-old company is currently working on launching a free satellite channel and further free AVoD channels on social media and video platforms.

The Amman-based prodco is best known for Emmy-winning series The Invasion as well as Nimr bin Al-Adwan, Odeh Abu Tayeh, Malik bin Al-Rayb, Sultana and Shahrazad. It was founded in 1983 by the late Adnan Al-Awamleh.


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