Pay-TV Operators Narrow Q2 Video Subscriber Losses20 Aug, 2014 By: Erik Gruenwedel
The largest multichannel video program distributors, representing about 95% of the U.S. pay-TV market, lost about 300,000 combined net video subscribers in the second quarter (ended June 30), compared with a loss of about 350,000 video subscribers in prior-year quarter, according to new data from Leichtman Research Group.
While a 15% improvement year-over-year, the subscriber losses underscore ongoing challenges in the MVPD market due to rising competition from over-the-top video sources such as Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu Plus, among others. Biggest industry concerns involve younger demo consumers accustomed to streaming video and less interested in traditional bundled cable channel offerings.
That said, among the top nine cable operators, which lost about 510,000 video subs collectively, the decline was actually the lowest since 2009. Satellite TV operators lost 78,000 subscribers in the quarter compared with a loss of 162,000 subs a year ago.
Meanwhile, telecom providers added 290,000 video subs in the quarter compared with 373,000 net additions a year ago.
“Over the past year, the top pay-TV providers actually had a small net gain of about 20,000 subscribers, compared to a cumulative net loss of about 70,000 subscribers over the prior year,” Bruce Leichtman, principal analyst for LRG, said in a statement.