Indian pay-TV industry will grow at 7% CAGR to reach $12.3 billion by 2025: MPA

A report by MPA predicts that more than 96% of India’s pay-TV homes will be digitalized by 2025

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Apr 13, 2021 4:25 PM

India’s pay-TV industry will grow at a 7% CAGR between 2020 and 2025 as total industry revenues, including subscription and advertising, are projected to reach $12.3 billion by 2025, according to a new report published by Media Partners Asia (MPA) titled India Pay-TV Distribution 2021.

The report predicts that more than 96% of India’s pay-TV homes will be digitalized by 2025 with total pay-TV subscribers expanding from 127 million in 2020 to 134 million by 2025. MPA estimates India’s active DTH homes will grow from 58 million in 2020 to more than 68 million in 2025. Cable’s share of pay-TV subscribers will decline from 54% in 2020 to 46% by 2025 while IPTV will pick up a small share after rolling out later in 2021.

Commenting on the key distribution trends, MPA India Vice President Mihir Shah said, “Robust backend systems, the ability to offer consumers flexibility in choosing channel packages under NTO and the exit of leading private channels from DD Freedish helped the DTH pay-TV sector grow even after the new TRAI tariff regulations came into effect. Going forward, DTH will be the key driver of growth fulfilling the needs of the majority of new TV households entering into the pay-TV ecosystem. Premium cable subscribers in urban centers remain vulnerable to churn as uptake of quality fiber-based broadband services including IPTV grows in affluent pockets of urban India.”

According to MPA, total pay-TV industry revenue, including subscription and advertising, declined 10% Y/Y in 2020 to $8.9 billion as the economic downturn post-COVID eroded advertising. The recommencing of fresh content and live sports together with improvements in consumer and economic sentiment will lead to a sharp recovery in 2021. After a 25% contraction in 2020, pay-TV advertising will grow at 12% CAGR over 2020-25.

During 2020, pay-TV broadcasters generated $4.4 billion in total revenue (62% from advertising and 38% from subscription), down 17% Y/Y. A sharp recovery is expected over the next two years with the channel business; advertising will primarily drive this expansion.

“TRAI’s heavy spate of regulations in recent years have depressed investment in pay-TV content and limited price elasticity for platforms. This could have a detrimental impact on the quality of content available for the mass market. We expect that more consolidation will play out in the broadcasting industry as recent tariff amendments force incumbent broadcast networks to recalibrate existing channel portfolios. The economics of less popular channels and several niche channels are no longer viable. A new and less draconian regulatory framework will help revitalize content creation in the pay-TV industry while also helping to bolster pricing power for pay-TV platforms," Shah said.

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