CTAM CABLE MARKETING EUROSUMMIT – BARCELONA. Solon is today unveiling its European Cable Survey 2007. The fourth annual study surveyed 10 operators in Western Europe and a further eight in central and Eastern Europe, representing subscribers from 100,000 to several million. Participating companies will receive a personalised report tracking their performance against the best practice.
“The operators can really see where they are against their peers and that’s very valuable,” said project leader Dr Dorothea von Wichert-Nick. She added that no single company had come top in all disciplines.
The survey divides into three areas, questioning company CEOs on their strongest markets and product ranges. A second section looks at operational issues, installation processes and customer networks, while a third element studies subscriber numbers, revenue expectations and the profitability of individual products.
The survey reveals the cable industry to still be highly profitable, with average EBITDA margins holding at around 43.5%, though short of the 46.3% predicted by respondents two years ago. Nevertheless, there remains a distinct optimism among respondents, who are still predicting a rise to 45.1% EBITDA margins by 2010.
Von Wichert-Nick points out that half of the respondents had also participated in previous surveys.
This continued optimism is based around the launch of new products and services, though the survey shows a marked difference between west and east. Central European operators continue to lean towards additional premium channels, while in Western Europe, where the channel line-up is already more extensive, they prefer to introduce VOD and HD product.
It is anticipated that by 2010, 85% of standard set-tops will be capable of delivering HD, compared to the quoted figure for 2006 of 17%. There is also a predicted growth to 46% in PVR from 17% today.