Viacom will remain Europe’s revenue leader

Total revenues for Europe’s top pay-TV channels will reach $4.24 billion (€3.2 billion) in 2012, according to a new report by Digital TV Research. The TV Channel Revenues in Europe report expects this figure to grow by $1.04 billion to reach $5.28 billion by 2017.

This report covers 195 international channels/networks (non-premium) from 11 groups. The estimates and forecasts in this report have been prepared using an analysis of a database of hundreds of financial records for individual channels, channel groups and corporate parents.

Co-author Nicholas Moncrieff said: “Although it provides the bulk of the total, carriage fee revenue growth is slowing as markets mature. Having said that, carriage fee revenues will climb by 11.6% from $2.93 billion in 2012 to $3.26 billion in 2017.

Most of the growth will come from a combination of higher penetration in Eastern Europe and the appearance of more HD channels that command higher carriage fees or at least allow channels to protect carriage fees in negotiations with platform operators.”

Co-author Simon Murray added: “Advertising has more room for growth as non-traditional channels gain audience share and greater acceptance among ad agencies. However, the international players face great competition as traditional domestic terrestrial players push their thematic channels. Advertising revenues for the channels featured in this report will increase by 53.1% from $1.32 billion in 2012 to $2.02 billion by 2017.”

Viacom is the top channel group by revenues generated (with $741 million anticipated for 2012), and will remain so for the forecast period (growing to just under $1 billion in 2017). The next group involves Discovery, Disney and Eurosport, which will all have similar revenues in 2012. Discovery is reported to be in talks with TF1 (Eurosport’s owner), which could create a combined group that would lead the market. In the third bracket, Fox, NBC Universal and Turner all have similar revenues.

This report estimates and forecasts revenue for the principal pay-TV channels of the major channel groups that operate across Europe. The channels are those that combine platform subscriber/carriage fees with advertising income as well as their group’s major free-to-air advertiser supported channel brands. Premium channels, principally movies and sport that require extra payment by the public, have been excluded together with a number of newer minor channels.

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