Pay-TV revenues to plateau near $200BN mark in five years

Joseph O'Halloran | 11-07-2012

Analyst Digital TV Research is predicting robust growth in global pay-TV revenues from $23 billion on 2011 to $200 billion in 2017, but by this stage rapid growth will likely have levelled out.

Indeed according to the latest excerpt of the Digital TV World Revenue Forecast report based on subscription and on-demand revenues, the analyst believes that that there will only be a rise of $2 billion, 1%, from 2016 to 2017.

Digital TV Research expects that during the growth trajectory, DTH (DBS) revenues will overtake cable TV revenues in 2015 with the former amounting to $91 billion in 2017, up from $76 billion in 2011. It adds that cableTV revenues will begin to fall in 2014, with revenues dipping $3.2 billion between 2011 and 2017 to $85 billion. However, cable operators will likely have gained extra revenues by converting subscribers to bundles.

On a regional basis, the report suggest that the US will remain the world’s largest pay-TV revenue earner “by some distance” even though it will experience a fall in revenues of $1.2 billion between 2011 and 2017 as homes convert to bundles and as competition forces down prices. On the other hand, Brazil’s revenues will double over the same period (adding $4.8 billion), with India (up $3.2 billion) also enjoying impressive growth.

Overall, global pay-TV revenues are set to grow by 13.5% between 2011 and 2017 and revenues will fall in North America and will only grow by 3.5% in Western Europe. However, Latin America will enjoy a 57.5% increase, followed by Eastern Europe (48.5%) and Asia Pacific (40.1%).

Explaining the likely trend, Simon Murray, report author, said: “Brazil will add the most DTH revenues [$3.86 billion] between 2011 and 2017 – nearly doubling its total in the process. The US will grow by $3.1 billion, meaning that Brazil and the US will contribute nearly half of the extra revenues…However, DTH revenues will decline for 17 countries between 2011 and 2017. Much of this is due to greater competition forcing down ARPUs. Furthermore, low-cost DTH packages are making a significant impact in several countries.”