Cyfrowy Polsat is undoubtedly one of the big success stories of satellite broadcasting in the CEE region.
Established in 2000, the Polish DTH platform initially offered a cheap and cheerful service, and in doing so acquired a much larger subscriber base than its competitors. Although the latter were initially limited to Cyfra+, they were subsequently joined by n and – late last year – Orange and TNK.
The appearance of the new generation platform n was of particular significance, as its heralded the introduction of such additional services as VOD and HDTV in the Polish market. And, needless to say, it forced the existing players to significantly up their game.
As a result, the service Cyfrowy Polsat offers today is in no way comparable to that even a couple of years ago.
This has been a particularly important month for the DTH platform for a number of reasons. Firstly, its owner Zygmunt Solorz-Zak has publicly stated he has no intention of selling it. Not that there ever really was a chance of such a thing happening: after all, why kill the goose laying Polsat’s golden eggs?
Secondly, it was announced that Cyfrowy Polsat is likely to introduce both internet access and VoD by the end of this year. And only this week, we have had confirmation that its parent company will launch two more proprietary channels in September – Polsat Futbol and Polsat HD – and that the platform will effectively be offering a triple play service by the end of this year.
All this has come against the backdrop of somewhat disappointing Q2 results. While Cyfrowy Polsat’s revenues were 25% up year-on-year, its profit was down by 29%.
The platform nevertheless remains in upbeat mood, pointing to a growing subscriber base that should easily reach 3 million by year’s end, if not the end of this quarter.
What is more, when taking everything into account, its optimism looks wholly justified.