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Viacom’s Pluto TV to Team Up With Short-Form Content Provider Complex Networks

On Our Radar: Deals we are paying attention to for their impact on industry.


Viacom’s Pluto TV announced Tuesday that it will partner with Complex Networks. The agreement will enable the ad supported streaming network to add its short-form digital content.


According to The Wrap, the deal will make Complex’s content available on its own 24/7 Pluto TV channel, and as part of Pluto’s growing selection of on-demand content.


Complex SVP of Distribution Myles O’Connell said in a statement that he was thrilled to partner with Pluto TV.


“Their unique approach to reaching diverse audiences across multiple platforms aligns perfectly with Complex’s commitment to providing entertaining and evergreen premium content to viewers, regardless of device or screen,” he said.


Complex is a joint venture of Verizon and Hearst Media whose short content targets a millennial and Gen Z male demographic with movies, sports, gaming, fashion, and food programming. Its shows include The Sneaker Shopping, Mostly Football and The Burger Show. The Complex YouTube Channel has 3.5 million subscribers and has received more than 1 billion views since its launch in 2015.


In addition to deals with YouTube and PlutoTV, Complex also has licensed some of its existing series to Netflix and Hulu. Its international streaming service iFlix is available in Southeast Asia and the Philippines.


Separately, as the highlight of its annual, upfront pitch to advertisers, Viacom-owned Pluto TV also announced that it will add 15 new channels to its service.. The new offerings include channels that will air old episodes of MTV’s popular reality show “The Hills.” Additional new channels will focus on classic programming from Viacom-owned networks, including Comedy Central, BET and Nickelodeon.


According to Viacom, PlutoTV has more than 15 million active monthly users with more than half its viewers also in the highly desired 18-34-year-old age group. They are either cord cutters or “cord nevers,” according to John Halley, executive vice president and COO of Viacom ad solutions.


Frances Katz is a freelance writer focusing on media, culture and technology. Her work has appeared in The Atlantic, The Week, The Washington Post, USA Today and other publications. She lives in Atlanta.

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