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Darroch: ‘Innovation core part of Sky brand’

Declaring that there has “never been a better time” to be in the broadcast industry, Jeremy Darroch, CEO of Sky, has suggested that the enlarged group, following the acquisition of Sky Deutschland and Sky Italia, is well placed to meet growing customer expectations of content quality, choice and availability.

Participating in a MIPTV Media Mastermind Keynote in Cannes, Darroch told delegates that the demand from customers for great content seems to be insatiable. “They want to have access to that content and they want the whole experience of watching television to be better,” he said, noting that the whole home entertainment experience had transformed over the last 10 years. “Part of that has been driven by what we’ve done, part by the consumer electronics manufacturers. The whole experience of in-home entertainment has got so much better,” he suggested. This trend had enabled customers to have access to the very best content and to get it on their own terms whenever and wherever they were.

“Innovation in the viewing experience has always been at the heart of what we’ve done as a business,” he declared, suggesting this went back to the original satellite channel launch giving viewers additional choice, with innovations such as Sky+ and high definition, 3D and Sky Go all being synonymous with Sky as a business. “What drives that is an appetite to constantly seek to get better and to raise the bar. It’s a core part of what we think the brand stands for and what customers expect from Sky.”

He said that bringing the three Sky operations together enabled a “step change” in what the company could offer its customers, enabling it to do things at a greater pace and raise its levels of investment. “The consequences for us as a business will be growth,” he said, noting that there were some 60 million customers in the markets in which it operated who were not pay-TV subscribers.

Rather than there being one ‘next big innovation’ that would further raise the bar in tems of the home entertainment and viewing experience, Darroch suggested the future was less about any one single idea than the ability to do multiple things across the markets in which it operated.

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