Telly App
FormerlyTwitVid Inc.
Company typePrivate[1]
Founded2009; 15 years ago (2009)[2]
Areas served
Middle East and North Africa
Key people
  • Nasser M. Al-Sabah (Chairman)[3]
  • CW Kruger (CEO)[4]
BrandsTelly Plus (2012)[5]
ServicesVideo streaming, Video on demand

Telly Inc (formerly Twitvid Inc) is a Kuwait-based company that operates a video discovery platform[2][6] and offers video streaming services in the Middle East[7] and North Africa.[5][8][9][10][11] The platform also features Bollywood films and locally produced content, TV shows and exclusive Original contents[12] as well as Kuwaiti Short Films on their website.[13][14][15]


Telly Inc, formerly Twitvid Inc, was founded in 2009 in the United States.[2][16] The company primarily serves Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Iraq, and Yemen with local presence and offices in Kuwait & Dubai.[2][11][17]

After its launch in 2012, Telly Plus made social recommendations for videos that a visitor's social contacts may have been watching. Telly claims to have had about 115 million views in February and has raised a cumulative of $20 million from different investors such as DFJ, Lumia Capital and Azure Capital with a majority stakes by Cinemagics in Kuwait, one of the leading production companies in the region, in a move to revolutionize and change the behavior of audience in the GCC region.[5] With the knowledge that no one had yet cracked the video-on-demand market in the middle east, Telly Plus and Icflix became the main competitors when they entered a fragmented market affected by piracy and little investment yet with 14.5 million hours of videos are watched per day.[5] Telly soon signed deals with Sony Pictures Television, Samsung mobile and Miramax as well as independent content owners for more than 1,000 television shows and films.[5][16][18][19]

In 2013, Telly acquired Sha-Sha (شاشا), which was dubbed as the Netflix of the middle east,[20] to serve video streaming to the Arab world.[21] Later, Telly teamed up with Telfaz 11, Saudi Arabia's primary Internet television network, to cater this customer base for a first window before the show hits YouTube.[16][22]


The company has signed up with major studios like Sony Pictures for series like Breaking Bad and films like The Social Network and There Will Be Blood.[5] Telly has been reported to leverage the trend of smart TVs[23][24] and smartphones in emerging markets, an approach that has also been cited for Netflix.[10][25] Telly has hence been mainly serving these two types of customers that prefer to stream videos online. This service has specifically been cited to be enabled in Panasonic Smart TVs as a pre-loaded service to market to middle east with Hollywood and Arabic movies and TV shows.[23][24][26]

Telly mainly generates revenue mainly from subscription based services as opposed to advertising to avoid losing customers to interruptions caused by the adverts, however, their business model is considered to be facing a competition by video piracy.[27]

In June 2015, co-produced with Cinemagics A Song in her eyes starred by Haya Abdul Salam & Fouwad Ali. This is the first move towards original production and programming for Telly.[28] According to Bloomberg L.P., Telly Partnered with Kuwait TV, KTV.[29] In 2016, Telly expanded into television production, and produced its 1st Original Online series exclusively for Telly Plus Subscribers, The name of the series was “After the End”, which was executed by Cinemagic.[30]

See also


  1. ^ "Telly Linkedin". 4 June 2015. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d "Telly, Inc.: Private Company Information - Businessweek". Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  3. ^ "Telly, Inc. - Relationship Science". Relationship Science. Retrieved 14 August 2017.
  4. ^ "Telly Partners with Kuwait TV To Digitize and Stream Popular". The Telegraph (Calcutta). Archived from the original on August 21, 2017. Retrieved 21 August 2017.
  5. ^ a b c d e f Jones, Rory (2014-03-19). "Streaming: Videos, On Demand in The Middle East". WSJ Blogs - Middle East Real Time. Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  6. ^ "Expanding internationally? Here's what you need to know to fundraise". VentureBeat. 3 May 2014. Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  7. ^ "Telly - the social video network - Telly Welcomes Telfaz11 to Telly Plus". Archived from the original on 2016-03-05. Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  8. ^ ""In her eyes a song" No ad breaks on "Telly"".
  9. ^ "Telly, Inc. - Valuation, Stock, Term Sheet, Investment Data". Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  10. ^ a b "The Daily Startup: Telly the Next Startup to Vie With Netflix Overseas". The Wall Street Journal, Blogs. 2013-12-19. Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  11. ^ a b "Ooredoo - Telly". Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  12. ^ "خدمة Telly | VIVA Bahrain". Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  13. ^ "Kuwaiti Short Films on Telly". 2:48AM - Everything Kuwait. Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  14. ^ "Short Kuwaiti Films Featured on Telly « The Kuwait Cine Blog". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  15. ^ "عبدالأمير عرض في عينيها أغنية على Telly مربح". Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  16. ^ a b c "Startup Telly Inks Sony, Miramax Deals for Video-Streaming Service in Middle East and Africa". Variety. 18 March 2014. Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  17. ^ "كويتيون يستحوذون على 20 في المئة من "Telly"". جريدة الراي الكويتية. Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  18. ^ "Startup Telly Inks Sony, Miramax Deals for Video-Streaming Service in Middle East and Africa". Variety. 18 March 2014. Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  19. ^ "مسلسل "في عينيها أغنية".. على Telly مع الكواليس". الوطـــن الإلكترونية. Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  20. ^ "Telly Video On-Demand Service Now Enabled in Panasonic Smart TVs - TFOUR.ME". TFOUR.ME. Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  21. ^ "Telly Acquires Sha-Sha - The Netflix of Middle East - TFOUR.ME". TFOUR.ME. Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  22. ^ "Telly And Telfaz 11 Team Up To Bring Online TV Entertainment Across Middle East - TFOUR.ME". TFOUR.ME. Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  23. ^ a b "Telly Video On-Demand Service Now Enabled in Panasonic Smart TVs". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  24. ^ a b "Telly Video on demand service now enabled in Panasonic Smart TVs". Al Bawaba. Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  25. ^ "Telly, Inc | App Annie". Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  26. ^ "Telly Video On-Demand Service Now Enabled in Panasonic Smart TVs". Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  27. ^ "Telly zooms in on Mideast video streaming market". Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  28. ^ "هيا عبدالسلام تراهن على نجاح في عينيها أغنية خلال رمضان". جريدة الشاهد اليومية. Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  29. ^ "Telly Partners with Kuwait TV - Bloomberg". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved 14 August 2017.
  30. ^ "Telly Original series - After the End". Telly. Telly Inc. Retrieved 21 August 2017.