Sluggish pay TV growth expected in Latin America

Monday, March 21st, 2016
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Pay TV revenues [subscriptions and PPV] in Latin America will grow by only 9% (or up by $1.6 billion) between 2015 and 2021, according to the fifth edition of the Digital TV Latin America Forecasts report. Economic woes are one reason for this slowdown, but market maturity is another.

Satellite TV will continue to be the largest pay TV platform, with revenues reaching $13.1 billion in 2021, up from $12.6 billion in 2015. Cable TV revenues will be $5.6 billion in 2021, up from $5.1 billion in 2015.

Simon Murray, Principal Analyst at Digital TV Research, said: “Digital cable TV revenues overtook analog cable in 2014 and IPTV will pass analog cable by 2020. IPTV revenues will grow by the same amount as satellite TV and cable TV over this period.”

Latin America pay TV revenue forecasts by platform
Source: Digital TV Research Ltd.

Brazil ($7.3 billion in 2021) will remain the top country by pay TV revenues by some distance, followed by Mexico ($3.4 billion) and Argentina ($2.2 billion). These three will collectively take two-thirds of the total for the 19 countries covered in the report. However, revenues will fall in Brazil, Puerto Rico and Venezuela.

Pay TV penetration will reach 50.6% by 2021, up from 45.0% at end-2015 and 28.7% at end-2010. This means 14 million more pay TV homes between 2015 and 2021; taking the total to 82 million. This compares to more than 27 million pay TV subscriber additions between 2010 and 2015.

Brazil will provide 4.7 million of the additions between 2015 and 2021 and Mexico 3.7 million. However, Brazil added 9.6 million new pay TV subscribers between 2010 and 2015, with Mexico bringing in a further 7.1 million.

Puerto Rico will record 83% pay TV penetration by 2021, with four more countries [Argentina, Honduras, Panama and Venezuela] above 70%. However, five countries [Brazil, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala and Peru] will be below 40%.

Extracting analog cable, the number of digital pay TV subscribers will rocket from 19.5 million in 2010 (13.7% penetration) to 52.3 million in 2015 (34.6%) to 80.9 million in 2021 (49.8%).