The loss of an important content distribution agreement with Starz Entertainment has dealt a blow to Netflix, or at least it will when the contract expires next February. But it’s an interesting development for Amazon.com, potentially opening the door to its own Starz deal.
That’s one theory following the announcement by Starz yesterday that it won’t renew the agreement that has provided Netflix with a key source of content for its streaming service. Amazon’s efforts to bulk up its Instant Video catalog has so far failed to make much of a dent in Netflix. But a deal with Starz could start to give Amazon the type of momentum it has so far struggled to gain in the online video market.
Bolstering its online video catalog is becoming more important for Amazon in the build-up to the expected release of its own tablet computers.
It’s far from a sure thing. Google and Dish Network are also considered potential players for a Starz deal, according to the Hollywood Reporter. And there’s also the possibility that this is a big negotiating ploy, with Starz announcing that it’s ending the deal as a way of ultimately extracting more money out of Netflix.