Advanced Television

SES Q3: Video revenues fall, UHD 24 channels

October 27, 2017

By Chris Forrester

Satellite operator SES suffered a 5.4 per cent drop in video revenues during its Q3 period (to September 30th), partly because of the failure of AMC-9 but also because of unexpected non-renewals at its recently purchased MX1 division (the former RR Media) which cost it around €7 million.

Total TV channels grew 6 per cent year-on-year to 7,743 TV channels with increases in all three of SES’s major regions – Europe, North America and International. The principal changes compared with Q3 2016 were:

  • 7 per cent increase in HD to 2,601 HD channels, now 33.6 per cent of TV total channels (Q3 2016: 33.3 per cent);
  • The proportion of total TV channels broadcast in MPEG-4 increased from 59.9 per cent to 63.5 per cent; and
  • Commercial Ultra HD (UHD) channels on the SES network increased from 17 UHD channels to 24 UHD channels.

The business remained solid, said the company, underpinned by long-term contracts and a substantial contract backlog, including an important capacity renewal with Sky Deutschland, covering seven transponders at SES’s prime video neighbourhood of 19.2 degrees East, to continue to deliver content to millions of subscribers. In October 2017, QVC signed a ten-year agreement for incremental capacity at 19.2 degrees East and MX1 backend services to launch a new UHD channel, as well as extending existing capacity commitments to continue distribution in SD and HD.

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