Upcoming Industry Conferences
Streaming Forum CONNECT [19 August 2020]
Content Delivery Summit [5 October 2020]
Streaming Media West CONNECT [6-7 October 2020]
Past Conferences
Streaming Media East CONNECT [2-3 June 2020]
Content Delivery Summit [1 June 2020]
Streaming Media West [19-20 Nov 2019]
Esport & Sports Streaming Summit [19-20 Nov 2019]
OTT Leadership Summit [19-20 Nov 2019]
Video Engineering Summit [19-20 Nov 2019]
Live Streaming Summit [19 Nov 2019]

Pay TV Subs Up in Western Europe, but Revenues Continue to Drop
It's a good news/bad news scenario for pay TV operators in Western Europe, according to Digital TV Research. Subscriptions are set to rise slightly, but revenues will be down $2.11 billion by 2023

Pay TV operators got some good news today from Digital TV Research, which found that pay tv subscriptions in Western Europe are on track to rise by 2.6% to 106 million by 2023. That's in contrast to the conclusions the research firm came to regarding Eastern Europe, where pay tv subs are expected to drop in the same period.

“Much of the pay TV subscriber growth will come from countries with traditionally low pay TV penetration. More than half of the region’s next additions will come from Italy [up by 960,000 between 2017 and 2023] and Spain [up by 716,000]. Germany will add 913,000 subscribers," says Simon Murray, principal analyst at Digital TV Research. 

But there's bad news as well: While Western European pay TV subs are expected to rise in aggregate, subscriber numbers will drop in six of the 18 countries covered in the report. That includes the UK, where 234,000 subscribers will drop service in the next 5 years, Murray says. 

And there's more bad news. While subscriptions will be up, revenues will be down by $2.11 billion by 2023, dropping to $27.27 billion. The UK will lose $628 million, even though it remains the most lucrative pay tv market, according to the research firm. Satellite TV in particular will take a hit across Western Europe. Though it will remain the highest-earning form of pay TV, revenues have been falling since 2011, and will continue to drop by another $2 billion by 2023. Cable TV revenues will drop $866 million by 2023. IPTV revenues, on the other hand, will rise by $883 million.

Liberty Global will remain the largest international pay TV operator in Europe, with 17.89 subscribers by 2023. But Sky is catching up, and will boast 14.86 satellite subscribers in the same time frame, and the company continues to be the pay TV revenue champ with $8.49 billion in revenue just from its satellite TV operations in 2023.

Related Articles
While pay TV is seeing big losses in the United States, it still has plenty of room to grow in other countries. IPTV adoption is strong in China.
Cord-cutting remains a problem for pay TV operators in more developed areas, while the rest of the world signs on for lower-priced service.
Look for the U.K. to be the biggest spender on OTT services, while Norway will have the highest proportion of subscriptions per household.
While OTT is growing rapidly, don't look for it to eclipse pay TV until 2027. Netflix's domination of the SVOD market will only get bigger.
Digital TV Research sees strong growth in subscription services in Western Europe, and a lack of the cord-cutting seen in the U.S.