Partnerships for MSN Video with MTV Networks and Sony BMG

Yesterday two partnership announcements appeared concerning MSN Video, one with MTV Networks and one with Sony BMG. They are European deals, but who says it won’t expanded in the future? MSN Video is currently available in over 23 countries. On February 2nd it got expanded to the following countries and languages: Russia, India, Belgium (Dutch), Belgium (French), Taiwan, Thailand, Indonesia and Philippines.

MTV Networks: The European deal covers MTVN video content for the UK, France, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands and Sweden, with Belgium, Denmark and Norway to follow. MTV and Microsoft will also be looking to extend the agreement to other European markets.

Sony BMG: The European deal covers Sony BMG video content for the UK, France, and Germany with the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Italy, Russia and Poland to follow.

MSN Video is currently viewed by more than 6 million European unique users per month. The MSN Video audience grew by 60% in five months from July to November 2007 in established markets (UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, and the Netherlands) and nearly 70% taking into account the addition of MSN Video in Sweden and Denmark.

So now you can go and watch your favourite shows on MSN Video such as Punk’d by Ashton Kutcher (known from “That 70’s Show”), Pimp my Ride, Cribs and South Park! Music fans will be able to choose from a wide selection of videos and exclusive videos as well as backstage footage, interviews, artist biographies, tour information and photos from some of the biggest superstars, representing virtually every genre of music.

Official Press Releases:

MTV Networks – PRESS RELEASE

Favourite MTV show clips now on MSN Video

London 5th February 2008 –  Microsoft’s Online Services Group and MTV Networks International (MTVNI), a division of Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), today announced a nine-country, European deal for MSN Video, Microsoft’s free, video-on-demand internet channel, to air clips of MTV Network shows.

MSN Video viewers can check out clips of cars pimped to perfection on ‘Pimp My Ride,’ watch Ashton Kutcher stitch up stars on ‘Punk’d,’ see how celebs live in ‘Cribs’ or take a trip to ‘South Park’ to see what Stan and Kenny have been up to. Viewers can also choose from other MTV Network hits such as ‘The Hills,’ ‘Barrio 19,’ ‘My Super Sweet 16’ and much more while additional video clips will be added to the MSN Video catalogue in the coming months.

Viewers will have access to even more entertainment choices as the MTV hits add to the existing selection of news, music, movie trailers, celebrity gossip and other entertainment videos available on MSN Video. That’s all in addition to User Generated Content created by the public on MSN Video’s ‘Soapbox’. Other features mean viewers can show off their ‘screen-cred’ by sharing links to their favourite clips via Microsoft’s popular instant messaging service, Windows Live Messenger, and social networking and blogging tool, Windows Live Spaces.

Geoff Sutton, Executive Producer, MSN Europe, said: “We want to offer the best selection of compelling programmes that excite and entertain people. Linking up with world famous entertainment providers like MTV Networks is one way for us to broaden our content and make MSN an even more stimulating and informed home on the web for our audience.”

For MTV Networks International, the deal is another major step in developing its comprehensive global content strategy. In December Viacom, MTVNI’s parent company, and the Microsoft Corporation announced a broad-based, strategic alliance under which major divisions of both companies will collaborate on advertising, content distribution, event promotions and games over the next several years. Two weeks ago, MTV Networks announced partnerships with a range of online sites to deliver its extensive library of short and long-form video content from MTVN’s popular music, kids and family, comedy and pop-culture brands.

Gideon Bierer, Senior Vice President, Digital Media, MTV Networks International, said: “This important deal significantly extends the availability of our video content across Europe. Our aim is to ensure our video content is available wherever and whenever our audience wants to watch it. Partnering with leading online video portals such as MSN Video means that even more people will have access to that content – and our advertisers will have access to a wider online audience.”

Bierer said that at first clips would mainly be supplied from MTV’s extensive library of shows, although some clips from other brands such as Comedy Central, Game One, Nickelodeon, Paramount Comedy and TMF would be available in some markets.

The European deal covers MTVN video content for the UK, France, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands and Sweden, with Belgium, Denmark and Norway to follow. MTV and Microsoft will also be looking to extend the agreement to other European markets.

MSN Video is currently viewed by more than 6 million European unique users per month. The MSN Video audience grew by 60% in five months from July to November 2007 in established markets (UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, and the Netherlands) and nearly 70% taking into account the addition of MSN Video in Sweden and Denmark. Partnering with leading content and entertainment providers such as MTV is part of Microsoft’s strategy to build the MSN audience further and deliver increased and better targeted results for its advertisers.

Internationally, Viacom’s online sites rank #2 in entertainment. Across all its websites, Viacom regularly receives 90 million unique viewers per month, nearly 60% of which come from outside the United States. For advertisers, MTVNI offers a unique proposition across all platforms – TV, online and mobile, combining global scale with local relevance.

Live in Europe: Get Punk’d and Pimp My Ride on MSN Video

Sony BMG – PRESS RELEASE

SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT music videos now on MSN Video

London 5th February 2008 – The latest music videos, news and information on some of the world’s most popular artists from one of the world’s biggest music companies, SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT, will soon be available on Microsoft Europe’s free, video-on-demand internet channel – MSN Video.

As a result of this agreement, music fans will be able to choose from a wide selection of videos and exclusive videos as well as backstage footage, interviews, artist biographies, tour information and photos from some of the biggest superstars, representing virtually every genre of music, all without ever having to go to a specialist music site or leave their PC.

Videos from SONY BMG’s vast rosters of superstar and emerging artists will add to the existing selection of news, music, movie trailers, celebrity gossip and other entertainment videos on MSN Video. 

Geoff Sutton, Executive Producer, MSN Europe, said, “Being able to check out new videos from your favourite artists on MSN Video and then share the links with your mates over Windows Live Messenger is a powerful thing.

“We know that music is a big part of the Messenger audiences’ lives and we have a long history of providing premium music content on MSN including exclusive webcasts such as the Live Earth concerts in summer 2007. Adding premium video content from SONY BMG is a great way for us to offer even more music choice to our viewers.” 

Ulrich Jäerkel, Senior Vice President, Digital & Business Development at SONY BMG in Europe commented, “With a substantial audience across Europe, MSN is a great way for our artists to connect with music fans throughout the region.   We look forward to working with MSN Europe as we give their viewers the chance to experience great music, and share it with their friends.”

The European deal covers Sony BMG video content for the UK, France, and Germany with the Netherlands Belgium, Spain, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Italy, Russia and Poland to follow.

MSN Video is currently viewed by more than 6 million European unique users per month. The MSN Video audience grew by 60% in five months from July to November 2007 in established markets (UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, and the Netherlands) and nearly 70% taking into account the addition of MSN Video in Sweden and Denmark. Partnering with leading content and entertainment providers such as MTV is part of Microsoft’s strategy to build the MSN audience further and deliver increased and better targeted results for its advertisers.

Live in Europe: Pop Divas Meet Rock legends on MSN Video 

I realise not all of our readers are located in Europe, let alone in the countries mentioned, but that doesn’t mean you can’t watch too. If it doesn’t show up for you, try the UK MSN Video site here. The content mentioned might not be on the site yet, give it some time, remember this news is still HOT from the press. You can also give the brand new Live Search Video Beta a try if you are looking for a specific video (not restricted to MSN Video).