Cable Industry Revenues Reach €18 billion

Wednesday, March 18th, 2009
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BERLIN — Revenues in the European cable industry jumped more than 7 per cent last year to €18bn amid sharply increased demand for digital television, internet broadband and telephony services according to figures presented today at the annual Cable Congress.

Senior executives from Europe’s largest cable operators today welcomed a strong increase in industry revenues and market penetration, as growth in cable services defied signs of a downturn in other parts of the European economy.

More than 650 delegates gathered for the annual Cable Congress were told that volumes among cable customers remain robust, with double-digit European growth last year in digital TV, cable internet and cable telephony subscriptions, based on analysis by Screen Digest.

The figures show that total cable industry revenues in Europe rose to €18bn in 2008, compared with €16.9bn in the previous year and more than double the €8.2bn total recorded at the start of the decade.

A breakdown by sector shows that Digital TV subscriptions of the European cable industry rose 33% from 13.5m to 18m, and now represent 29% of all Cable TV subscriptions in Europe (2007: 22%). Cable internet subscriptions increased 17 per cent to 18.3m and cable telephone services rose 19 per cent to 14.2m. In total, The European cable TV industry services more than 94 million broadband, TV and telephony subscriptions throughout the EU 27 (around 70 million households).

Manuel Kohnstamm, president of Cable Europe, said: “Growth figures for 2008 are very encouraging and show how the cable industry outperformed in the current economic slowdown. We stay resilient by taking full advantage of the continued transition from analogue to digital distribution. This gives us reason to be optimistic for the year ahead.”

Particularly strong growth was reported in Central and Eastern Europe, where subscriptions almost tripled to 1.6m from 613,000 in 2007. Total revenues from CEE grew 15% to €1.9bn in 2008.

Of Europe’s largest markets, particularly strong growth was reported in Germany, the Netherlands and the UK.

Caroline van Weede, Managing Director of Cable Europe, said: “The Cable Congress is thriving again this year with executives having travelled from all over Europe to strike deals that will generate further growth in 2009. I’m happy that Cable Congress is increasingly successful in connecting the cable, content, technology and new media industries.