TVNZ to announce $16 million TiVo buy

Briefing today expected to confirm investment

TVNZ has paid $16 million for a third share of the TiVo platform in ANZ, according to the Australian Financial Review.

As tipped early this month, TVNZ has bought a share in Hybrid Television services from the Seven Network. The AFR reports that TVNZ CEO Rick Ellis and his CFO, Rodney Parker, have joined Hybrid's board.

Seven network signed a licencing deal with US-based TiVo in 2007.

As reported on March 10, it is expected TVNZ will use TiVO to supply downloadable movies, possibly through Blockbuster and VideoEzy as part of an internet service package.

This month Hybrid TV CEO Robbee Minicola confirmed the company would offer a bundled 24-month data plan in Australia priced between A$79-A$99 a month. Customers will receive a TiVo box, and connection equipment as well as an ADSL2+ connection as part of the plan.

Movie content would be delivered on a pay-per-view basis.

Minicola said he was open to talks with ISPs wanting to bundle the service, but providing unmetered downloads was a prerequisite of any such deals.

TVNZ is holding a briefing this afternoon where more details of its plans — and possible ISP partners — may emerge.