Britain’s two biggest broadcasters are setting aside their own rivalry to create a joint streaming platform dubbed BritBox.
Advanced discussions are now taking place between the BBC and ITV with the expectation that other providers can be cajoled into taking part, providing a one-stop shop for British box sets, brand new commissions and on demand classics.
Carolyn McCall, chief executive of ITV, said: “I am really pleased that ITV and the BBC are at the concluding stage of discussions to launch a new streaming service.
“BritBox will be the home for the best of British creativity - celebrating the best of the past, the best of today and investing in new British originated content in the future.”
BBC director general, Tony Hall, added: “I am delighted that the BBC and ITV are working together on something truly special - BritBox. A new streaming service delivering the best home-grown content to the public who love it best.”
BritBox is already a reality in the US where it has exceeded expectations to accrue half a million subscribers, with a UK edition now expected to land in people’s homes from the second half of this year.
Both the BBC and ITV remain tight-lipped their proposed subscription rates, saying only that it will be ‘competitive’.
ITV’s net investment in BritBox will be up to £25m in 2019, rising to around £40m in 2020 and declining thereafter, according to ITV's full year results report.