Subscriber numbers to the Setanta Sports package have risen to two million following the sweetheart carriage deal with cablenet Virgin Media. Around 1.2 million of Setanta’s subscribers receive the premium channel as part of Virgin’s XL big basic package, according to research from media advisors Oliver & Ohlbaum. This leaves 800,000 that are paying for the channel directly, either from Sky Digital or from DTT, where Setanta is available through both Top Up TV and BT Vision. Oliver & Ohlbaum estimates the overlap between Setanta Sports and Sky Sports to be just 90,000 homes.
Oliver & Ohlbaum estimates there to be a market of 1.6 million subscribers that could be tapped by Setanta, the majority of which are DTT households. Research from O&O said that more than 80% of people polled in a survey of 2,500 respondents were aware of Setanta.