Audience declines at Germany’s Pro7Sat.1

Germany is far from alone in suffering a ‘dislocation’ in terms of ad-spending on broadcast TV. But the advertising downturn is hitting one of Germany’s popular commercial broadcasters, ProSieben.Sat1 (P7).

A report from equity analysts at Deutsche Bank says that falling audience share for P7’s two key channels: Sat.1 & ProSieben, is not new. “It has been visible in ratings for the past 18 months and P7’s launch of new channels have offset somewhat.”

The bank’s report compares and contrasts P7 with that of RTL, and says the TV leakage of ad-budgets to digital is greater than expected. “This scale of downgrade in P7 guidance is not just share loss. We have had channels lose and gain share in Germany and other markets in the past, but not such a precipitate cut in outlook and difference between the two groups. With RTL at +1 per cent, P7 at -3 per cent and public channels also likely to be negative, the German market looks to be ~-2 per cent for 3Q. This is worse than our June estimate of flat and put against the strong German consumer conditions and real GDP, makes the evidence of dislocation look even worse.”

“We’ve seen this in UK, Scandi, Netherlands, Spain & France. But Germany looked insulated by slower changes in viewing habits and the large print base for social, mobile & online video to grow into. This case now looks misplaced,” adds analyst Laurie Davison.

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