These are the 250 hours of drama, sport and reality TV being added to STV Player this autumn

STV, the Glasgow-based broadcaster, is adding more than 250 hours of content to its video-on-demand service this autumn after a surge in demand.

A new partnership with Fred Media sees a range of lifestyle, reality and factual titles being launched, including international food series Peter Andre’s Greek Odyssey.

Under a string of new deals, the content line-up on STV Player will be bolstered by drama programmes East West 101, Striking Out and Devil’s Dust. They will join what the firm described as an “already stellar line-up” which includes the likes of Catching Milat, The Bridge and Janet King.

The catch-up window on network content has also been extended, meaning hit dramas like Des and Honour will be available on the player platform for longer.

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The group is also adding 140 hours of new sport to the video-on-demand service as part of the latest catalogue expansion. Weekly football analysis shows Life’s a Pitch and The Football Review lead the new additions, alongside “petrolhead-friendly” titles Garage Dreams, The Racing Years and Shifting Gears with Aaron Kaufman.

STV is also adding 140 hours of new sport to the video-on-demand service as part of the latest catalogue expansion, including The Football Review.

STV said it had ordered a “wealth of new content” from distribution partners DCD Rights, Fred Media, Inverleigh and Broken Arrow.

In total, STV Player now offers some 1,750 hours of exclusive content with seven live channels. The latest programme additions follow a year of “accelerated” digital growth for STV, with online streams up 66 per cent year-on-year, and the number of minutes watched rising from 719 million to 1.32 billion – an 84 per cent year-on-year increase.

The past year has also seen the player being launched UK-wide on Freeview Play, Virgin Media and YouView, making it automatically available in around half of the UK’s 42 million internet-enabled TV devices.

Richard Williams, managing director of digital at STV, said: “It’s been a truly landmark year for the STV Player in which we’ve not only seen a surge in viewers watching the fantastic network content on offer, but also a rapidly increasing number of viewers from across the UK enjoying our diverse selection of Player-exclusive content.

“Our focus on bolstering our Player-only offering is being well-received by viewers – and with 1,750 hours of content now more easily accessible than ever, we hope they will continue to make STV Player their go-to destination for free on-demand TV from around the world.”

A new partnership with Fred Media sees a range of lifestyle, reality and factual titles being launched, including true crime series City of Evil and The Trouble with Murder, international food series Peter Andre’s Greek Odyssey and Lee Chan’s World Food Tour, and hit Australian reality format Tattoo Tales.

Last month, STV pointed to a recovery in advertising revenues and added another producer to its growing studios portfolio after the pandemic dragged the group to a first-half loss.

Releasing results for the six months to the end of June, the broadcaster said it had seen its highest audience growth ever, up 12 per cent, with all time viewing share of 19.2 per cent. That growth had continued as lockdown measures were relaxed, it added.

While total advertising revenue slumped 20 per cent as the industry was battered by the effects of the coronavirus outbreak, the group pointed to an improving picture.

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