Rapid TV News reported that StarTimes is making up ground on Multichoice’s DStv and GOtv pay-TV services, along with Vivendi’s Canal Plus, after disrupting Sub Saharan Africa’s pay-TV sector with keen pricing during 2016 - this according to Digital TV Research.
StarTimes and its South African subsidiary StarSat will enjoy the most impressive growth of the three major pay-TV players – from 4.18 million subscribers at the end of 2016 to 10.61 million by 2022, the analyst forecasts.
Leading operator MultiChoice had 11.61 million subscribers across its satellite TV platform DStv and digital terrestrial television (DTT) platform GOtv by the end of 2016, a figure which will grow to 17.66 million by 2022, according to the research company’s new report. Vivendi had 2.32 million subscribers to its Canal Plus satellite TV platform and Easy TV by the end of 2016; with analysts predicting this amount to climb two million to 4.32 million by 2022.
Most of the major players in the Sub-Saharan African pay-TV sector lowered their prices last year to remain competitive, creating a domino effect in price cuts, however pay-TV in the region is thriving, claims the report.
“With a limited number of DTT licences on offer, StarTimes is focusing more on its satellite TV operations, which is disrupting the sector. StarSat is much cheaper than DStv and Canal Plus and not that much more expensive than pay DTT,” said Simon Murray, principal analyst at Digital TV Research.
Of the 19.47 million pay-TV subscribers across 35 countries at the end of 2016, 12.14 million received satellite TV services and 6.76 million opted for pay DTT services. The pay total will nearly double to 36.72 million by 2022, with satellite TV contributing 18.36 million and pay DTT 15.84 million.
At the end of 2016, South Africa accounted for 6.39 million of Sub Saharan Africa’s total pay-TV subscriber base. By 2022, the country’s pay-TV subscription level is set to rise to 9.14 million, according to Digital TV Research. The second largest market, Nigeria, will increase its pay-TV subscription base by four million from 4.46 million in 2016 to 8.45 million in 2022, researchers forecast.
Sub-Saharan pay TV revenues will reach US$6.59 billion in 2022, up from $4.20 billion in 2016 and $1.65 billion in 2010. South Africa and Nigeria will contribute nearly half of the region’s pay TV revenues by 2022.
In terms of platforms, satellite TV delivered 87% of the 2016 pay TV revenues, but its market importance will shrink to 78% by 2022. In contrast, pay DTT will rise from 11% of the overall total in 2016 to 18% by 2022 – equating to revenues of $467 million last year to $1,156 million in six years time.