New partners include TV broadcasters such as Dubai Media Inc, Abu Dhabi Media, and Vice Middle East, as well as local digital content producers and publishers such as Gulf News, Sabq, and ITP Media Group. They will join existing Snapchat partners in the region such as MBC Group, Al Arabiya, Al Aan TV, Sayidaty, and UTURN.
Broadcasters are working on popular series for Snapchat’s Discover page, with 32 shows across entertainment, sport and food. Each show is about, five minutes long, with a clear narrative, and motion graphics, split screens and quick cuts. Examples are Scoop with Raya from MBC and the Tareq Show from Rotana Media Group.
“The Middle East is a very engaged content market for Snap – we saw a 54% increase in time spent in Discover from April to September of this year. From the sneak peak we’ve had of these shows, I have no doubt Snapchatters are going to love them,” said Rami Saad, head of international content partnerships at Snap.
Jason Leavy, managing director MENA of broadcast network Vice, said: “We see the launch of Vice Arabia’s Snapchat Discover Channel as a crucial step in ensuring we can be true to our mission of being the authentic voice of Arab youth.
“Snap has done a phenomenal job in the MENA region in building a huge following among that generation so there’s a clear synergy in terms of our audiences. Vice has some of the most engaged Discover channels in other global markets and we believe we will have a similar impact here, given our content is all created by Arab youth for Arab youth.”
Snapchat also announced a new six-second non-skippable commercial format for brands, due to be introduced in the first quarter of 2019.