Set-top box maker Pace has predicted a World Cup sales boost as pay-television firms rush out HD technology ahead of this summer’s football tournament. Pace said sales for the first six months of 2010 would outstrip the second half of 2009, although trading for the overall year will be in line with expectations. The firm added: “We entered 2010 in a strong operating and financial position with our pay-TV markets continuing to be positive and with good demand for the group’s products.”
The eagerness for HD technology has driven demand across all of Pace’s markets. Although 3D technology is still in its infancy, the firm estimated that only 4 per cent of global TV households had made the switch to the format by the end of last year. The company expects “solid” volume growth this year along with slightly lower selling prices, resulting in single-digit revenue growth.
Pace has also landed new contract wins including a deal to provide Malaysia’s first HD service, as well as a second generation STB for BT Vision and a new range of Freeview products in the UK.
Mike McTighe, Chairman, said: “We have continued to develop our strategy to be at the heart of home entertainment convergence for the payTV industry, the next evolutionary shift in our market. In 2009 we established initial market leadership with the launch of our Home Content Sharing product in the US. The acquisition of Paris-based IP and cable gateways specialist Bewan, which closed during the period, is another step towards our convergence goal. Bewan complements and strengthens Pace's existing gateway business: advanced residential gateways will become increasingly important to payTV operators as they develop converged home entertainment services.”