Russia will lead pay TV growth in Central Europe

By FNE Staff

    Media analyst Screen Digest predicts 63 million pay TV subscribers in Central and Eastern Europe by 2012, with 28 million pay TV homes in Russia.

    The report, issued May 8, said cable and satellite will reach 60% of households, up from 40% at the end of 2007.

    Andrew Katolo, Screen Digest (www.screendigest.com) research analyst commented, "The opportunities for investors, particularly in satellite pay TV platforms, are improving rapidly." He added, "Whilst Western European Pay TV markets are almost at saturation point, there is still huge potential for growth in the Eastern European markets and Russia especially."

    Screen Digest expects market consolidation will continue over the next five years, with major operators growing their market share through acquisition. Since 2004, growth in the region has been almost double that of Western Europe, reaching 18% growth in 2007. At the same time, average revenue per customer grew 10% in 2007. The satellite pay TV market in Russia should see the greatest impact, increasing from under 1.5 million at the end of 2007 to 5 million customers by 2012.