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TELUS CEO: Netflix a Threat, But Could Bundle With TV Packages Instead

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Canada’s major telecoms are increasingly viewing Netflix as a threat as more consumers shed away premium cable packages and opt for online streaming alternatives instead.

Bell Media and Astral argued to the CRTC their merger should be approved so together they can address “challenges to our business” from Netflix and create their own competitor. Earlier this week a report cited Rogers was set to create its own Netflix competitor to retain former customers.

As for TELUS? The company does not own any media or broadcast properties but that hasn’t stopped CEO Darren Entwistle from seeing U.S. Netflix as a possible opportunity, as opposed to a threat. He noted the following yesterday at the company’s annual general meeting (via Edmonton Journal):

“It’s a threat, but it’s also an opportunity for us without a shadow of a doubt,”

[…]

“We could potentially bundle Netflix as a part of a Telus solution. We could perhaps buy it on a wholesale basis and brand it accordingly,”

Entwistle said TELUS could develop over-the-top applications to compete with Netflix and noted they would welcome being offered subscription models to be bundled into their TV packages. TELUS needs to “differentiate us from the competition, from the Netflix of this world in a meaningful way,” he went on to add.

TELUS says Acquiring a Newer Wireless Entrant Not a Necessity

With reports of TELUS in talks to acquire Mobilicity, Entwistle says acquiring a new network is not a necessity:

“Telus doesn’t need to do any acquisitions to realize its strategy. It’s not a must-do situation. It’s very discretionary.”

As of their 2013 Q1, TELUS eclipsed Bell to become the second largest carrier in Canada with 7.7 millions subscribers.

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  • Telus please keep your mitts out of my Netflix! Your right to see it as a threat and I’ve watched less of my Telus TV since I’ve subscribed to Netflix Canada.

  • Yeah Netflix is great for TV shows and movies. Basic cable for HD channels of major networks nowadays seems to cover everything else.

  • If Netflix was smart they would offer, some local programing so it would be a complete alternative to cable and satellite Relegating the big three to internet services. Actually the competition could force them to drop their prices. Also with DNS services you can get more content on Netflix, I get all the American content I want, as well as US sites. Unlike some of the Canadian versions, they offer full episodes of recently aired shows.

  • K3

    So Telus wants to be the “middle man”?

  • Al

    Nah… That’s not their market. They are masters of the commercial free shows/movies. Trying to incorporate broadcast tv would start to erode their niche. Then they would get too big, and have to raise their prices, and people would start bitching about Netflix. Just leave them alone and appreciate how much you get for $8/mth

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