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Exclusive content driving MENA pay TV

Pay TV operators in the Middle East and North Africa region are looking to exclusive programming to build their subs bases and subscribers and revenues will increase sharply between now and 2021, according to new research.

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Digital TV Research says the number of pay TV homes in the MENA region will have doubled between 2010 and 2021, taking the total to 20.9 million.

About five million of these will be added between now and 2021, and by that point Turkey is expected to account for the greatest proportion of pay homes with 37% of the total.

Report author Simon Murray said: “Gaining subscribers in the MENA is no mean feat as piracy remains rampant in most countries. More than half of the region’s homes receive free-to-air satellite TV signals.”

He added: “Furthermore, established pay TV operators now have to compete against new platforms as several IPTV operators put greater emphasis on SVOD than on traditional linear channel packages.

Across the 2010-2021 period pay TV revenues will climb 82% Digital TV Research says, although within that time frame, the growth in the next five years will slow to 25%.

Turkey and Israel are expected to contribute 45% of the region’s pay TV revenues in 2021; down from 52% in 2015.