Africa tipped for ‘pay TV surge’

African pay TV operators will lead growth across the EEMEA group of emerging markets between now and 2020, according to Digital TV Research’s latest regional report.

Digital TV Research predicts that MultiChoice-owned pay DTT platform GOtv will gain 5.84 million subscribers between 2014-20 to reach 7.5 million, while rival operator StarTimes will grow by 4.39 million and Canal+ will grow by 1.34 million.

GOtv and StarTimes are expected to join the top five EEMEA operators by subscribers, pushing Liberty Global’s CEE operations and Cyfra Polsat down the listing. Liberty Global will nevertheless add 869,000 subs in central and eastern Europe.

Tricolor TV in Russia will remain number one, with 13.392 million, up from 10.919 million in 2014, followed by MultiChoice’s DStv with 12.055 million, up from 7.74 million. DStv will push Russia’s Rostelecom down one place from second to third, with 8.839 million subs, up from 7.966 million in 2014.

Pan-Arab satellite TV services will also add subs, with beIN Sports up by 768,000 and OSN by 630,000.

Fourteen of the region’s operators are expected to lose subscribers, including Romania’s RCS-RDS, pan-Arab operator ART and Hungary’s Digi TV.

Total subscription and VoD revenues for the 112 operators surveyed will nearly double between 2010 and 2020 to almost US$15 billion, according to Digital TV Research. DStv will remain the wealthiest operator over the forecast period, followed by Liberty Global.

DStv will also be the biggest winner, increasing revenues by US$1,246 million between 2014 and 2020. Sister company GOtv will add US$545 million,while Canal+ in African will add US$484 million. Pan-Arab beIN will climb by US$443 million, according to Digital TV Research.

The top five operators by revenue will be DStv, Liberty Global, Digurk, Canal+ and OSN.