Gracenote launches FAST acceleration programme

Gracenote launches FAST acceleration programme. Unveiled at IBC in Amsterdam, it promises “better FAST content visibility, consumption and monetization.”

Gracenote, a unit of Nielsen known for providing entertainment metadata and content IDs, on Tuesday unveiled a new offering to help content companies get their Free Ad-Supported Streaming (FAST) channels and programming distributed by major streaming platforms more easily. The FAST Program, which promises to “streamline” FAST initiatives, was announced at the International Broadcasting Convention (IBC) in Amsterdam.

“Leveraging advanced data enrichment services, the Gracenote FAST Program will help Gracenote customers accelerate time-to-market for their FAST offerings just as they become increasingly important to their overall content monetization strategies,” the company said. “No longer a testing ground for content owners and publishers, FAST has matured quickly into a proven revenue driver through advertising sales. Now that FAST has grown up, content owners are realizing the need for high-quality normalized metadata and connected content IDs to facilitate distribution on streaming platforms, drive program and channel visibility as well as increase viewership.”

The Gracenote FAST Program promises “expert enrichment of editorial and contextual data plus access to rich program imagery which drive increased channel engagement,” the company said. “Assignment of Gracenote IDs to participants’ content streamlines placement on major streaming platforms through Gracenote Listing Distribution Services and enables easier content discovery. In addition, Program participants receive a ‘Gracenote Certified’ designation giving them an advantage when pitching their FAST offerings to platforms which prefer, and in some cases require, standardized Gracenote metadata and IDs.”

The service comes at a time of growth in FAST offerings and the revenue they provide. For example, NBCUniversal and Roku last month said they were teaming up to launch several FAST channels devoted to long-running shows in NBCU’s library, including Murder, She Wrote, the original Saved by the Bell, and Little House on the Prairie.

Gracenote cited a Statista projection that revenue generated by FAST channels worldwide will reach $18 billion by 2028, with the U.S., U.K., South Korea, Germany, India, Canada and Brazil the leading markets.

“The rapid rise of FAST has been one of the most notable recent developments in the global video ecosystem,” said Vikram Kulkarni, vp, strategic initiatives, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) at Gracenote. “Based on our position at the heart of this ecosystem, we are uniquely positioned to help content publishers from small to large benefit from the maturation of FAST, and we look forward to helping them achieve better FAST content visibility, consumption and monetization.”

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