Advanced Television

45,000 global TV channels by 2020

May 28, 2012

By Chris Forrester

SES is well ahead with developing its five-pillar strategy for expansion, CEO Romain Bausch told investors and analysts at the operator’s Investors Day meeting in London last week.

The ‘pillars’ themselves are straightforward enough but implementing them has created a huge amount of work and restructuring at the Luxembourg-based business. SES is now firmly focussed on Developing Spectrum, Innovation, Investment, Enhancing its sales force and Improving organisational efficiency.

Bausch said these aims would see SES increase its DTH coverage beyond today’s 6200 TV and radio channels (and of which 1200 are in HDTV), while at the same time boosting enterprise and telco-based services, while also supplying bandwidth to governments (and military) customers.

He also explained that the switch-off of German analogue transmissions, and the legacy of 43 transponders which were once of some anxiety as far as their resale prospects were concerned, are now selling very well. At the end of analogue transmissions only 32 transponders were being used, and of those 13 have already been re-contracted and a further 10 will start generating income during this year. Bausch said he expected all of the remaining transponders to be fully commercialised by 2016, driven by the expansion in HDTV demand.

Bausch said that SES’s revenues y-o-y represented growth from 21.7 per cent of the global industry revenue of some $10.6 billion in 2010, to last year’s share at 21.8 per cent of the $11.1 billion total market.

Looking forward he said he expected the total global market last year of some 7399 transponders to have grown by 2015 to 9718 transponders, and where SES expects to grow its total from last year’s 1321 transponders to 1570 by 2015 (a CAGR of 4.4 per cent). However – and this was key as far as SES is concerned – the various local and regional satellite operators would grow their transponder, during the 2011-2015 period, by a typical 12.4 per cent CAGR.

It is these ‘emerging’ markets which represent the strongest growth prospects over the next few years. While between 2010-2020 the total number of TV channels will grow by 45 per cent, the growth in HDTV channels will top 255 per cent, to an overall growth in the number of global channels to 45,000.

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