The European TV market grew by a modest 0.9 per cent in 2012, reaching a value of €95.1 billion, while advertising revenues were down almost four per cent to €31 billion, according to the “Turning Digital” report from Italian consultancy ItMedia Consulting.
Despite growing by 3.7 per cent, the pay-TV market is slowing down and is now worth nearly €43 billion, while the TV licence fee revenues amount to slightly less than €21 billion. Traditional sources of revenue (advertising on terrestrial channels and the TV licence fee) are taking resources from pay-TV and digital advertising. In 2012, the multichannel environment accounts for 56 per cent of market value, over €53 billion.
The digitisation of European homes continues unabated: at the end of 2012 some 91 per cent of TV homes in Western Europe was receiving digital TV. After the last switch-off, approximately 165 million homes enjoy the benefits of DTT, 10 million more than a year earlier.
DTT reception is the first among the forms of TV reception, with a 36 per cent share, followed by satellite (53 million households), and digital cable (36 million homes, or 22 per cent of the total). IPTV has recorded the fastest growth rate (+15 per cent), amounting to 3.2 million new IPTV homes.
Among the top 5 markets, Italy, together with Spain, is the country most affected by the economic crisis, with a 12 per cent fall in advertising revenue and recording a major drop in the number of pay-TV subscribers. On the other hand, together with the UK (and Finland), Italy is the first all-digital country (100 per cent) and also has the highest number of channels on DTT. Additionally, it also registers the highest growth in the ratings of thematic TV channels, significantly increasing the share in just two years (from 20 to 34 per cent).