Pay TV revenues for the 20 countries in the Middle East and North Africa covered in the new edition of the Middle East and North Africa Pay TV Forecasts report will reach $4 billion in 2021 – down from $5 billion forecast in the last edition.
Turkish pay TV revenue forecasts for 2021 are down $361 million on the last edition, with Israel falling by $220 million, the UAE $174 million and Saudi Arabia $149 million. So, these four countries will account for 90% of the revenue shortfall between the two editions.
Simon Murray, Principal Analyst at Digital TV Research, explained: “Along with long-running conflicts and slower economic growth, several countries (notably Turkey and Egypt) have suffered substantial currency devaluation. OTT is creating competition to traditional pay TV operators, especially in Israel. It’s not all bad news, with Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Qatar and the UAE enjoying good growth.”
The number of pay TV homes will increase by nearly 5 million between 2015 and 2022 to 19.52 million. About 18.7% of TV households paid for TV signals by end-2016, which will climb to 22.2% by 2022.
Digiturk will remain the region’s pay TV operator leader in subscriber terms – by some distance. Second-placed beIN formally acquired Digiturk in September 2016.
beIN is forecast to have 1.67 million satellite TV subscribers by 2022 – ahead of OSN’s 1.50 million [so excluding subscribers to their channels on other platforms such as IPTV and cable]. beIN will overtake OSN in 2019.
However, OSN is the largest pay TV operator when measured in revenue terms. OSN’s packages are expensive even compared with the most developed countries.
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