when you have so many Spanish movies that you can set up your own Netflix.

In the competitive and overcrowded streaming market, FlixOlé and its commitment to Spanish cinema have managed to become an alternative, or rather a complement, to the offerings of giants such as Netflix, Amazon or HBO. A little over a year ago, the digital service of Enrique Cerezo – Atlético de Madrid president since 2003, in addition to being a prolific film producer and distributor since the 1990s – announced its official launch and its current catalog, as of today, already exceeds the 3,000 titles, mainly classics of our cinema, but also European and North American series and films. The price: single 2.99 euros per month. And what’s more, it’s available worldwide. To unravel its global strategy and dive among its many gems, we spoke with María José Revaldería, general manager of FlixOlé.

“The platform was born out of the need to digitize all the classic Spanish cinema that was being lost. Except for Spanish Television, few channels buy this type of cinema and we, who are a large film distributor since Mercury Films, a bit the matrix of the projectWe had a lot of movies that were stored in the can. We wanted to restore them, digitize them and make them available to everyone. Because many were not on BluRay or on any platform, ”explains Revaldería. “We had more than 800 old films, some from 1935, that we decided to restore, and together with the most modern we made up a unique catalog of very good Spanish cinema that had not been seen,” he adds.

when you have so many Spanish movies that you can set up your own Netflix

With the experience of the regional channel 8 Madrid, where Cerezo had been broadcasting these same films since 2006; and an agreement with CaixaBank, which allowed them to find a technological partner with which to launch the platform, FlixOlé began operating at the end of 2017. “Seeing the success it had and how we could increase the catalog we decided to release it to the public in November 2018, when we already had a customer base ”, Revaldería tells about the official launch of the platform, also available on Orange TV.

Today the viewer will find a video on demand subscription service with more than 3,000 titles between movies and television series. To the original bulk of Spanish cinema from 1940 to 1980, more recent national titles have been added, classic Hollywood films from RKO Pictures or Italian and French films. “Classic movies work very well. I would highlight all the Buñuel cinema, which is something that everyone should see; the quinqui cinema, which attracts people a lot; and the erotic cinema from the 70s, which you can also see a lot, ”says Revaldería. “Among the most recent titles you see a lot of comedy, but we also wanted to incorporate thrillers like ‘The method’, ‘I just want to walk’ or ‘The tip of the iceberg’. And international films like ‘Valkyrie’ ”, he continues listing. “In addition, we have bet a lot on the short film thanks to the agreements we have signed with the ECAM and Notodofilmfest“, Add.

when you have so many Spanish movies that you can set up your own Netflix

How to make a catalog visible without news

With such a variety of titles and due to the lack of new releases, FlixOlé tries to distinguish itself from its competition by communicating its diverse catalog between the thematic sections, which change every month to adapt to current events, and the highlights, which reveal hidden gems. Thus, the subscriber can discover or revisit from the movie ‘Novecento’ to series like ‘Celia’ or ‘The lady’. ‘Fists out’ concentrates Bud Spencer and Terence Hill movies. And in essentials you will find masterpieces by Álex de la Iglesia, Luis García Berlanga, Carlos Saura and José Luis Cuerda. But also from foreign directors like Orson Welles, Federico Fellini, Alfred Hitch___ or John Ford.

“We don’t like to talk about ‘Neighborhood cinema’ because we have Paco Martínez Soria, but Spanish cinema is much more”

when you have so many Spanish movies that you can set up your own Netflix

“This week we have made a special of Antonio Banderas, another two for the week of the Oscars and the Goya, at Christmas we did a childhood cycle in the cinema,” says the General Manager of FlixOlé. In addition, every month they incorporate new features. Y keep users informed by email and social media. “We have invited the people subscribed to the ‘newsletter’ to the Forqué and Feroz awards, we hold contests, give away t-shirts, movie posters, tickets to movie premieres … Beyond notifying the news, we try to carry out loyalty actions to give added value to our subscribers ”, he concludes.

The eclectic list of movies most viewed during the last 30 days on FlixOlé includes ‘Twelfth Night’, ‘My big night’, ‘The education of fairies’, ‘Lucia and sex’, ‘The city is not for me’ and ‘Suffer sucker’. “In September we premiered exclusively the G Men movies coinciding with the concert they gave ”, clarifies Revaldería. “When the kids are at home, movies like ‘Planet 51’ are among the top 10 most watched. But in general, it is very similar to television consumption ”, he adds about his main strength: his experience in the analog world.

when you have so many Spanish movies that you can set up your own Netflix

“As we are a company dedicated to cinema for many years, we have experts in cinema. We pull the 8 Madrid Televisión team, which has measured the data of the films that perform best in audience, and we have been programming and selling as a distributor to other televisions for many years, so we know quite well what user behavior is like and, above all, how our films work ”, affirms Revaldería.

And what do you think that many have dubbed them the Netflix of ‘Neighborhood Cinema’? “We speak of classic cinema, even of old cinema with the previous films of the war, but we don’t like to talk about ‘neighborhood cinema’ Because that concept that Televisión Española has for Paco Martínez Soria’s films is not what we want to offer. We hate what the adjective is, because we also have Paco Martínez Soria and he is the most popular. But Spanish cinema is much more and we have many genres ”, replies Revaldería.

Your strategy: reduced price, unique accounts and global access

In short, FlixOlé is a video on demand subscription service with recommendations where by 2.99 euros per month or 29.99 euros per yearAfter 14 days of free trial, you will be able to enjoy unlimited access to its commented catalog. Yes indeed: the accounts are individual, so that each user can only view the content on one screen at a time, although they can be identified on five different devices. It should be noted that all content can be downloaded to view ‘offline‘.

when you have so many Spanish movies that you can set up your own Netflix

“It is a strategic and company decision,” says Revaldería in this regard. If you pay 15 euros for Netflix, it is normal that they give you four accounts. But if you pay 2.99 euros, there is only one account per customer. An advantage when you are last to market is that you learn from others. And Netflix is ​​already regretting this and it will cost a lot to change it, “he says. Unlike other Spanish platforms, our service is international because 80% of the catalog is available worldwide

“Our service is international because 80% of the catalog is available worldwide”

For all that has been said, Revaldería ensures that its clients are among the most loyal of streaming, which he explains as follows:Our cancellation rate is very low because we offer a lot for little money. We have a different consumption than serial platforms. People have become accustomed to signing up for platforms to watch a series due to launch, but it is seen on a weekend and then they can unsubscribe. We are clear that people like to see movies again. Because when we look at our consumption data, the most viewed are not the premiere ones or the highest grossing, but the most memorable. For example, this Christmas one of the most watched films has been ‘The nativity scene was armed’, and that in that same month it was broadcast by La 2 “.

when you have so many Spanish movies that you can set up your own Netflix

By the way, the profile of the FlixOlé subscriber “according to Google Analytics data because we only have the email address and the IP” is an adult over 25, there are as many men as womenThey are middle or upper middle class, and are adapted to new technologies.

FlixOlé is available on FlixOle.com, as well as through different applications for IOS and Android tablets and phones. It can also be seen on televisions by downloading the application for Samsung, LG, Android TV and Apple TV, or using Google Chromecast and the AirPlay function of Apple TV. As noted before, it is also available to Orange TV subscribers.

Although its main market is Spain, FlixOlé can be accessed worldwide. “Unlike other Spanish platforms, our service is international because 80% of the catalog is available worldwide. We have many clients in the United States, where it costs $ 3.99, Mexico and Argentina, and we are working to make a space for ourselves in the Hispanic market, ”says the general manager. “In the end what you have to do is communication because, if not, people do not find out that you exist,” he points out about his next objectives, which also include the production of originals.

“We have already co-produced two documentary films: ‘Histories of our cinema’ with Antonio Resines ”, a tour of our cinematography with testimonies from directors, actors and producers,“ and ‘Wild Session’ with Apache Films, which premiered in Sitges and is still in distribution at festivals, but We will have it soon ”, a review of Spanish ‘exploitation’ cinema from the 60s to the 80s that goes from western to low-budget horror, passing through the aforementioned quinqui and erotic genres.

when you have so many Spanish movies that you can set up your own Netflix

The future of streaming: integration and specialization

Speaking of the evolution of the market, Revaldería predicts: “I think the platform process will be like that of thematic channels.” And he explains: “At the beginning there were a lot of niches and channels, then they merged and those that they have survived are the very thematic ones, those that have their niche and will always be there ”. Hence rule out investing in children’s content. “Now comes Disney, which is going to keep the segment of the family and children audience because it has everything. It is silly to fight over that when we have so much catalog ”, and quotes from ‘Los clowns de la tele’.

To continue increasing its number of subscribers, whose number they do not share, FlixOlé does not rule out integrating its service on other platforms and continuing to close agreements with other partners. For example, the libraries of the Cervantes Institute all over the world have access to the platform. And several Senior centers in the Canillejas district in Madrid you can enjoy the FlixOlé catalog.

In conclusion, Revaldería considers that coexistence between platforms is more than possible thanks to the ease of contracting and low prices. “We are used to paying 60 or 70 euros for pay television. Now, in total, you are going to pay less even if you have several platforms, “he says.

when you have so many Spanish movies that you can set up your own Netflix

Photos: FlixOlé