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Business trends

Netflix and Tencent vie for Southeast Asia's eyeballs

Video streaming giants chase growing middle class as smartphones shove aside TV

Netflix, the top video streaming company in Southeast Asia, has secured exclusive rights to make a miniseries based on the rescue of a Thai soccer team from a flooded cave.

BANGKOK/JAKARTA -- Video streaming is king in smartphone-savvy Southeast Asia, and global heavyweights like Tencent Holdings and Netflix are battling along with regional tech companies over a burgeoning market set to expand into the tens of billions of dollars per year.

Tencent on Friday launched the WeTV platform in Thailand, its first overseas streaming market. The Chinese technology giant aims to break into Thailand's top three services by the end of 2019 with such offerings as Chinese movies and dramas, which have gained a following in Thailand.

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