Overstory Media Group has acquired Vancouver alt weekly The Georgia Straight. The move returns the 55-year-old news, lifestyle, and entertainment publication to West Coast ownership. It was acquired in 2020 by Toronto-based Media Central Corporation, which filed bankruptcy proceedings in March. Joining Toronto’s NOW Magazine, nowtoronto.com, and cannabis platform CannCentral.com under the MediaCentral banner, the transaction saw a streamlining of editorial and ad sales across the properties and a move away from The Georgia Straight’s longstanding focus on arts and culture. Overstory says reinstating the publication’s focus on entertainment, music, food and news is its first order of business. Based in Victoria, Overstory now encompasses more than 12 digital-first publications and employs 50 full-time employees across the Vancouver Tech Journal, Calgary Citizen, Halifax alt weekly The Coast, and Capital Daily serving Greater Victoria, among other publications. Read more here.
Roku is unveiling its Roku Ultra player in Canada. The fastest and most powerful Roku player to date, Roku Ultra streams in 4K supporting Dolby Vision® and HDR10+ and featuring Dolby Atmos® audio quality as well as private listening via Bluetooth connectivity. The Roku Voice Remote Pro allows users to use hands-free voice for actions like “Hey Roku, show me action movies,” among other features like a lost remote finder. Software updates to the Roku interface include: Featured Free, an improved experience for discovery and engagement of free content; a Save List where users can now save movies and TV shows from across the Roku platform; and the addition of French-Canadian voice search. Roku OS 11.5 will begin rolling out to Roku devices in the coming weeks with Roku Ultra available at major retailers in Canada in October.
DAZN Group has announced its acquisition of ELEVEN Group’s global sports media business. The deal expands DAZN’s capabilities in the live sports streaming sector, with the transaction propelling DAZN to become the broadcaster of top football leagues in Portugal and Belgium. ELEVEN Group’s business will also complement DAZN’s existing market-leading positions in Italy, German-speaking Europe (Germany, Austria & Switzerland), and Spain, where DAZN holds top tier domestic football rights. ELEVEN also has a presence in Taiwan and other Southeast Asian markets, giving DAZN a greater foothold in the region. The acquisition of ELEVEN-owned and U.S.-based Team Whistle, boasting over 700 million followers across its channels, will also give DAZN access to younger audiences.