Discovery founder Hendricks launches SVOD service CuriosityStream

After pioneering the nonfiction programming template that formed the backbone the cable industry for the last two decades, Discovery Communications founder John Hendricks is looking to become a part of the SVOD revolution that's currently undermining pay-TV.

The 62-year-old entrepreneur, who recently retired from the Discovery board but still owns 2 percent of the company's stock, is looking to launch a new subscription video-on-demand service, CuriosityStream.

Targeted to go live in March, the service will include documentaries and other nonfiction programming themed around science, nature, history and technology.

The service will also have a 4K production component, with filmmaker David Conover commissioned to shoot a 20-part nature documentary called Big Picture Earth in the Ultra HD format.

Consumer pricing would range from $2.99 to $9.99, depending on various tiers.

"As many in the industry know, I have long dreamed of a content-on-demand service that uses advanced media to empower the enduring human desire to understand the Universe and the world around us," Hendricks said, in a statement. "The advent of online streaming technology utilized by Netflix and other successful video streaming services has created a video transmission infrastructure that finally allows viewers to watch what they want to watch, when they want to watch it. Of course, this same on-demand, ad-free transmission framework can deliver premium factual content as well as premium entertainment content. CuriosityStream is the world's first ad-free, SVOD service that addresses our lifelong quest to learn, explore, and understand. For consumers, our aim is to provide the first and best on-demand video streaming destination that aggregates and curates the world's best factual content."

For more:
- read this CuriosityStream press release
- read this Wall Street Journal story
- read this Hollywood Reporter story

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