Originally Posted by blade005
I Don't think a merger is in the near future.
BRITBOX is a BBC and ITV creation. ACORN TV is a AMC NETWORKS (Acorn TV, Sundance NOW, Shudder, IFC Films, etc) service. I wouldn't mind seeing AMC Networks roll all of their disparate streaming services into one reasonably priced offering.
What I would expect is that as streaming rights windows on ITV or BBC content that is currently on Acorn TV expires that more of that content will become exclusive streaming on BritBox, such as Poirot and other Agatha Christie content. I subscribe to both and find the $6.99 (Britbox) and $4.99 (Acorn TV) monthly fees via Prime Video channels together are a justifiable monthly fee for all of the British, Canadian, European and Australian content across both. But then I also include MHz CHOICE in my subscriptions to pick up all of the unique French, German, Swedish and other European crime and mysteries that are not on BritBox or Acorn TV.
ITV have a much larger stake in BritBox UK than the BBC, I don't know about the US set-up. I'd expect ITV Studios productions to be BritBox - and I wouldn't be surprised if more recent ITV commissions from independent production companies were on BritBox too.
However BBC Studios productions and BBC Content commissions from Indies for the BBC are a different matter, as the BBC may not have as big a commercial incentive to prioritise BritBox over more lucrative sales. That said - in the UK a number of BBC shows that were on Netflix or are currently - will be leaving the platform at the end of their current licensing periods.
For info - in the UK whilst the BBC and ITV can commission independent production companies to make shows they broadcast domestically, the PACT (Independent Production Companies trade body) rules that the BBC and ITV (and C4 and C5) work within mean that international rights for sale of these shows outside the UK are not owned by the BBC or ITV, and ordinarily (*) remain with the production company that made them. (They may chose to sell them through the BBC Studios - formerly BBC Worldwide - and ITV Studios sales arms, and they don't have to sell them to BritBox specifically in either the UK or the US - though they may chose to). Within the UK, most Indies retain full rights to their shows after a 5 year licensing period has elapsed (with the commissioning broadcaster having to re-license the production to show it outside of this window - though it's a bit more complex than this)
The BBC in the UK have recently extended their free, UK-only, iPlayer platform to retain all BBC made and BBC commissioned shows for 12 months (rather than 30 days) Catch-Up viewing - which explains why they have less interest in the UK BritBox pay-TV platform. (The PACT deal that the BBC made to allow this has reduced the percentage the BBC are paid for independent productions they funded and commissioned being sold internationally, but it means they have no increased commissioning or rights payments up front to add the 11 month streaming rights)