LATAM pay-TV piracy stands at 27%

Iñaki Ferreras | 07-11-2012

As the TV industry is growing in Latin America, so is illegal access to signals, with 11.4 million households (27% of total subscribers) receiving pay-TV illegally, according to a report by Dataxis.
The seven Latin American markets surveyed by the consultant in late 2011 had a total household pay-TV subscriber base of 53.2 million, 41.7% penetration. The report notes that the resulting total penetration would be 7 percentage points higher than this if all access was legal.
Business Bureau, another consultancy operating in the Latin American market, believes the average piracy rate is lower, at around 14% as of June 2012. Business Bureau took 21 Latin American markets, with one notable exception: Brazil. But it considered another factor that matters to the channels, but not operators: it considered the ‘under-reporting’ of existing subscribers. According to Business Bureau, the under-reporting averages 17%.
‘Piracy’ is the making of a clandestine signal, while ‘under-reporting’ is a trade issue between the signals and operators, reports International Prensario.
The industry has recently attacked piracy through awareness campaigns undertaken by organisations such CAPPSA in Argentina and the Uruguay Government banned the sale of free-to-air (FTA) boxes which can be modified to receive encrypted signals. There has also been a coding change in satellites for Chile, Bolivia, Paraguay and northern Argentina.