CME Co-CEO Christoph Mainusch has called for the complete deregulation of advertising, with only TV broadcasters deciding how much they show.
In a keynote presentation at the start of New Europe Market (NEM) 2016 in Dubrovnik, he added that public broadcasters should not be allowed to carry advertising at it impacts negatively on the market, citing as an example Croatia’s HRT.
Mainusch was also critical of DTT, which he described as an obsolete technology. In his view, moving to DVB-T2 is the wrong step, an expensive technology that in some instances may be subsidised by governments. DTT discriminates against other delivery systems such as cable and DTH and it would be better to invest in future technologies. At best, DTT services should be encrypted.
On the other hand, he conceded that CME still relies heavily on DTT in some of its markets – 54% in the Czech Republic – and not at all in others (Romania) and the process would have to be managed.
Speaking more generally, Mainusch dismissed the supposed threat of services such as Netflix to linear TV. He also said that TV in CEE would not experience the same fate as the music industry for a number of reasons.
Firstly, music differs significantly to TV, which has always reached consumers electronically.
Secondly, Netflix is successful in the US due to the price differential with cable delivered services, for instance.
In CEE, the difference is much smaller and in some instances Netflix is more expensive.
Thirdly, Netflix has local content, but only in the US, not in CEE.