Christopher Gordon of FLOW, left, and Dennis Bowman of CDC, sign the contract while staff of both entities look on. (IWN photo)

Telecommunications provider FLOW has expanded it agreement with the Carnival Development Corporation (CDC) and will broadcast several Vincy Mas 2015 shows free regionally and internationally, in addition to the pay-per-view service locally.

FLOW and CDC signed the agreement in Kingstown this week and will see the Miss SVG, Miss Carival, and Soca Monarch shows being broadcast on Flow Channel 100 in Trinidad, Jamaica, Barbados, St. Lucia, and Grenada.

As part of the agreement, One Caribbean Television will also come to St. Vincent and the Grenadines and produce and air several short segments, which, along with the selected shows, will also be broadcast along the eastern seaboard of the United States.

“The agreement would cover pay-per-view locally and would also provide for regional broadcast of some of our shows to the wider Caribbean where FLOW is the service provider,” chair of the CDC, Dennis Ambrose said at the signing ceremony.

Ambrose said that since the CDC introduced pay-per-view some years ago, it has helped to bring Vincy Mas to many homes and to persons who are unable to attend the shows at Victoria Park.

“It remains reasonably priced, with the promise of quality transmission,” Ambrose said, adding that pay-per-view has provided the occasion to have some Vincy Mas events shown in the Caribbean, giving wider exposure to the festival and the country as a whole, thereby being a great marketing tool.

“One can appreciate that it is generally a costly exercise to engage in marketing strategies, but by this medium, we can get our message out, that Vincy Mas is in fact the hottest carnival in the Caribbean.

“We have been trying on a limited scale for a number of years to sell our message across the region,” he said, mentioning advertising during the regional broadcast of cricket as an example.

“But this agreement allows the direct exposure of Vincy talent to be showcased across the region in real time; happening live,” the CDC chair said.

“This is a great step forward. There is tremendous attraction to our Soca Monarch and the Miss Carival shows, both of which carry a heavy regional appeal,” he said, adding that the pay-per-view package will begin on with the Miss SVG show, scheduled for May 30.

Ambrose said that the immediate benefit of the broadcast of the shows to the region and internationally may not be realized readily, adding, “but for the years to come, we would see that the benefits are substantial.

“This new partnership we are entering into, is foreseen to be rewarding, and intended to bring more visitors and returning nationals closer to Vincy Mas, closer to homes, and to give our artistes and our Carnival events and greater boost,” he said and thanked FLOW for pursuing the initiative.

Christopher Gordon, country manager of Columbus Communications SVG Ltd, owners of FLOW, said his company is happy to support culture and play a role in the promotion of culture across the region.

“We will certainly hope that persons who may be looking at a vacation destination or looking for an entertainment event or a cultural event will now see St. Vincent as an option for their time, and certainly disposable income,” he said.

FLOW is this year offering a “Fantastic 4” package to pay-per-view subscribers, which will see them being able to watch Miss SVG, Miss Carival, Soca Monarch and Dimanche Gras for EC$100, a saving of EC$35 over the price if the shows were subscribed to individually.