Watch out Amazon, here comes Walmart.
A new deal announced Monday cements the retail company as a serious competitor in the streaming video space.
Vudu, the streaming video service owned by Walmart, says it has signed a deal with MGM to develop TV series based on the independent studio’s vast film and TV back catalog.
The first slate of MGM programming will arrive on Vudu in 2019.
Shows picked up by Vudu will be available exclusively in the company’s free, ad-supported “Movies On Us” service in North America.
Vudu executives told Variety, which first reported the news, the acquired content would be family-friendly and ad-friendly.
The deal marks a significant investment in streaming video for Vudu, which allows consumers to rent or buy movies and TV shows. It also offers a library of movies and TV shows free to watch with advertising.
Amazon has taken a slightly different approach when it comes to streaming video.
The online retail giant offers ad-free streaming movies and TV shows through its Amazon Prime Video service. It also streams “Thursday Night Football” and is said to be developing an ad-supported streaming channel for its Fire TV line of products.
The company is expected to pursue other exclusive content deals in the coming months, though as Digital News Daily has reported, there aren’t many high-profile rights available at the moment. Many of the big players, like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon, snatch up the biggest titles.
Signing exclusive deals like Walmart-MGM may be one solution to the problem.