Pay-TV and video see rising demand throughout the German-speaking territories

Wednesday, July 25th, 2018

Pay-TV Celebrates New Audience Records and Invests in Local In-house Productions

  • 18.5 million pay-TV viewers (Germany, December 2017)
  • Around 9 million pay-TV subscribers (German-speaking territories, 2018 forecast)
  • Pay-TV and paid-VoD revenue to reach 3.8 billion euros (German-speaking territories, 2018 forecast)
  • Some 2 billion euros invested in pay-TV programming in 2017 with increasing investment in local in-house pay-TV productions

BERLIN/MUNICH — Pay-TV and video services continue to record rising demand throughout the German-speaking territories and are investing to an increasing extent in local in-house productions. These are the key findings of the market analysis Pay-TV in Germany 2018, which was presented today in Munich by VAUNET – the German Media Association (formerly VPRT).

Pay-TV Viewers in Germany

In Germany, pay-TV programmes already recorded an average reach of 16.2 million pay-TV viewers per month in 2017 (2016: 13.1 million), which represents an average number of 3 million more pay-TV viewers than in the previous year. During the first half of 2018, an average of 16.6 million viewers per month was recorded. The highest figure to date was reached in December 2017, with 18.5 million pay-TV viewers.

Pay-TV Subscribers in German Speaking Countries

The number of pay-TV subscribers reached approximately 7.7 million in Germany during 2017 (2016: 7.5 million) and around 8.7 million across German-speaking territories (2016: 8.4 million). This is equivalent to subscriber growth of around 0.3 million. For the current year 2018, VAUNET is forecasting an increase of 0.2 to 0.3 million up to around 8 million subscribers in Germany and around 9 million subscribers across the entire German-speaking area.

Pay-TV and Paid-VoD Revenues in German Speaking Territories

Total revenue from pay-TV and paid-video-on-demand rose by some 15 percent during last year, reaching approx. 3.1 billion euros in Germany (2016: approx. 2.7 billion) and approx. 3.5 billion euros in the German-speaking territories (2016: approx. 3 billion euros). These figures include increases in pay-TV revenue of around 7 percent up to approx. 2.3 billion euros in Germany and approx. 2.6 billion euros in the German-speaking area. For the current year 2018, a further rise of some 4 to 5 percent is forecast in pay-TV revenue, around 20 percent in the case of paid-video-on-demand revenue and subsequently around 8 to 10 percent for total pay-TV and paid-video-on-demand revenue, which is expected to reach around 3.8 billion euros.

Frank Giersberg, Member of the Board of Directors, Market and Business Development at VAUNET: “Pay-TV is set to continue its successful growth and pay-TV channels are investing more than ever before in programming. Programme-related investments amounted to some 2 billion euros in 2017, of which as much as a three-digit million fig-ure was attributable to local in-house productions.”

Hannes Heyelmann, Managing Director, Central and Eastern Europe and International Programming Strategy at Turner: “In Germany, pay-TV is producing more series than ever before. We are delighted as this is important for the entire industry. As the pioneer in Germany in the field of local original pay-TV productions, we see this development as re-assurance that our strategy is the right one and we will continue investing in original programming for our TNT Serie and TNT Comedy channel. In 2018, we have already significantly increased our output and are producing four original series including one co-production with HBO Europe.”

Katharina Behrends, Managing Director Central and Eastern Europe at NBCUniversal International Networks: “Pay-TV has long since become a key driver in promoting the positive reception of German productions abroad. In fact, creative programme development on the part of broadcasters and their aim to supply original content for best-quality entertainment have played a major part in helping German-speaking series productions become a factor to be taken seriously in the international marketplace and extend their appeal far beyond the German-speaking area.”

Marcus Ammon, Senior Vice President Film & Entertainment at Sky Deutschland: “Bab-ylon Berlin”, “X Factor”, “Das Boot”, “Acht Tage” and “Der Pass” – in terms of in-house productions, Sky is more active than ever before and is reaching an audience of millions. Both our customers and the industry as a whole are able to benefit from this. An aware-ness of pay-TV as a place for creative, out of the ordinary, entertaining stories has been acquired by both the industry and viewers. This is demonstrated by the rising number of viewers and the sustained positive overall trend recorded by the pay-TV sector in Ger-many and Austria. Offering a unique line-up of in-house productions, the coming months will make Sky a place to be for viewers.”

Dr. Patrick Hörl, Managing Director of SPIEGEL Geschichte & SPIEGEL TV Wissen: “Pay-TV channels and operators play a crucial, and often indispensable role in financing premium content. Many films and series would simply not get made without pay-TV money.”

Susanne Aigner-Drews, SVP and General Manager Discovery Deutschland: “Pay-TV has a great emotional impact. Here viewers experience strong brands, high-quality programmes and a diversity of offerings. Thanks to unusual perspectives and innovative technology, such as HD and 4K, pay-TV is setting trends and standards in the television sector. As Discovery, we stand for premium content based on a high level of investment. The exceptional result can be seen every second, for instance in the form of visually stunning documentaries on DISCOVERY CHANNEL. As a result of innovative storytelling, our pay-TV documentaries are presented in a highly attractive way and create moments that you don´t forget. In this way, we make a significant contribution to the great diversity offered by German pay-TV.”

Dr. Andreas Weinek, Managing Director of A+E Networks Germany: “Each year, A+E Networks produces more than 1,400 hours of new programming for its brand portfolio, from which our HISTORY and A&E channels benefit. Their localisation does for instance guarantee our partnership with ZDF, but for some years now, our local in-house productions have been an especially important mainstay, these being distributed on an international scale thanks to strong support from our parent company A+E. Especially documentaries like “Die Befreier” are, in addition to being broadcast, frequently shown at relevant festivals, in schools and as part of commemorative events, which shows that the effort and investment involved are in many respects worthwhile.”