Content distributor DramaFever, an almost-two-year-old angel-funded startup, says that, after a year of talks, video hub Hulu has agreed to host a Hulu/DramaFever show page, which launched earlier this week, offering free access to a curated selection of 5,000 hours of the most popular titles from Korea, Philippines, China, and Japan, including full-length TV series, documentaries, music videos, and more. Shows include Korean hits "You're Beautiful", "New Wise Mother, Good Wife", "What's up Fox", "Chuno", "Pasta", and "MBC - Music Core", among others.
While much of the demand for direct-from-Asia TV shows and content has been driven by the booming Asian population in the U.S.-the Census website says it's doubled in size since 2008-more than 50 percent of DramaFever's audience in non-Asian, the company says. DramaFever claims great stickiness and engagement on its site, DramaFever.com, saying viewers watch about four hours of video on the site each month and stay for about an hour each visit. It says its user base has grown 500 percent in three quarters to more than 250,000 uniques, one percent of whom convert from the free to paid subscription.
It's expecting a huge boost from its tie in with Hulu.
"Asian content has wide appeal internationally and is growing in popularity among non-Asian audiences. People are curious about what's popular in the East or want alternatives to traditional TV programming," says co-founder Suk Park. "We created DramaFever to make the best of Asian entertainment more accessible to mainstream American and Canadian audiences, and our deal with Hulu helps us introduce this content to the millions who visit and explore new videos on Hulu every day."
This month, DramaFever will distribute 116 episodes of the most recent seasons of four of Korea's hit television series, which enjoy large international followings and popularity among non-Asian audiences on DramaFever.com. Then each month, DramaFever will add one to two additional titles, up to 40 new hours of programming to the DramaFever show page at http://www.hulu.com/network/DramaFever. DramaFever will draw from its expanding library, one of the largest collections of legal Asian content in the U.S. The company says it currently has more than100 titles representing 5,000 hours of programming.
The company says it plans additional deals for content with more Asian TV networks and partners.
All videos are streaming in high-quality with English subtitles or dubbing.
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