• 2011: European cables year of harvesting investments

    2011: European cables year of harvesting investments

    by Chris Dziadul

    Europes cable industry is back on track, its revenues of 18.8 billion in 2010 being 6% higher than the previous year. As a result, Manuel Kohnstamm, the president of Cable Europe, says it now views 2011 as the year of harvesting investments and is genuinely recognised to be a player delivering the goods.
    Speaking at a specially arranged press conference ahead of the official launch of Cable Congress 2011 in Lucerne, Caroline van Weede, MD Cable Europe, set the scene for the event by providing a snapshot of the European cable industry in 2010.

    Digital cable revenues grew by 17.4% in the year and digital TV accounted for 58.4% of all TV revenues. Broadband revenues were meanwhile up by 4% to 4.9 billion and telephony by 9% to 3.35billion.
    There was double digit growth in RGUs, of which there were 102 million at years end.
    Broadband via cable grew by 11% and telephony via cable by 11%.

    Van Weede said it was instructive to compare revenues in 2010 to those five years earlier. In 2010, TV accounted for 56% of the total (60.6% in 2005), while the internet claimed 26% (19.6%) and telephony 18% (19.8%).
    With a demonstration of 1.4 GB having been given by Cablecom only yesterday (February 14), Europe is now also the global leader in terms of broadband internet access speeds.
    Van Weede also revealed some preliminary findings of a study undertaken by Cable Europe that showed that 50% of European households are now in reach of broadband and even fast broadband.

    Over half (51.5%) of homes will have internet access of 30 Mbps by 2013, and by 2020 one in four will opt for 100 Mbps or more.
    A DOCISIS 3.0 take-up of 23% is predicted in five years from now.
    In a Q&A session, Kohnstamm predicted more consolidation for the European cable industry.
    In discussing OTT, he said that the limiting factor is securing rights, citing the Yelo TV service operated by Telenet in Belgium.

    Kohnstamm also said it did not expect to see the same level of cord cutting as in the US, where cable operators currently have much higher ARPUs to those in Europe.