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Tough Christmas for U.K. Physical Entertainment

23 Jan, 2017 By: Erik Gruenwedel


DVD, music CD and video games impacted


About 1 million fewer people in the United Kingdom bought a DVD, music CD or video game over the winter holidays compared to the previous-year retail period — translating into a £31 million ($38.8 million) revenue loss, according to new data from Kantar Worldpanel.

The British research firm said sales of DVD movies and TV shows, music CDs and video games in the third-largest home entertainment market declined a combined 7.8% during the 12-week period ended Dec. 18. Music and video saw double-digit declines, with sales falling by 11% and 12% respectively, while gaming was down by 2.7%.

“The increasing popularity of digital entertainment products is making it ever more difficult for retailers to maintain the relevance and excitement of giving physical entertainment products as gifts, and it’s not been an easy Christmas as a result,” Fiona Keenan, strategic insight director at Kantar Worldpanel, said in a note.

The news isn’t surprising. Digital sales and rental of movies and TV shows (including subscription streaming) in the U.K. in 2016 surpassed packaged media for the first time, according to the Entertainment Retailers Association.

The trade group said electronic sellthrough revenue topped £1.3 billion ($1.6 billion), up 22.8% from £1 billion ($1.3 billion) in 2015. Sales of DVD and Blu-ray dropped nearly 17% to £893.6 million ($1.1 billion), while disc rentals plummeted 21% to £49.3 million ($61.2 million).

Overall video sales spiked up 2.2% to £2.25 billion ($2.79 billion).
 


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