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IHS Markit: EU cable revenues up despite dip in TV customers

IHS MarkitThe cable industry in the European Union grew from €21.2 billion in 2014 to €22.4 billion in 2015, despite a dip in cable TV subscribers, according to IHS Markit.

The research firm’s new ‘2016 European Broadband Cable Yearbook’ claims that the industry grew despite “increasing competition” from traditional and over-the-top (OTT) players.

TV accounted for almost half of total cable revenue in 2015, coming in at €10.5 billion, and the take-up of digital services was found to be on the rise.

However, the total number of cable TV subscribers in the European Union fell from 55.7 million in 2014 to 55.1 million in 2015, according to the report.

At the same time it said the revenue contribution of internet and telephony services has risen over recent years, climbing from 47% in 2010 to 53% in 2015.

IHS Markit said that by the end of 2015, close to two-thirds of cable homes opted for digital TV and that high definition TV (HDTV) was taken by 54% of European digital cable homes.

While ultra high definition was found to still in its infancy, the report said that the uptake of HD “bodes well for acceptance of the new formats such as UHD and 4K in the years to come”.

IHS predicted the cable “consolidation trend” would continue following a number of important mergers and acquisitions in 2015, including Tele Columbus’ buyout of Primacom in Germany, and Altice gaining control of Numericable-SFR in France.

“Further consolidation in the sector can be expected, with cable remaining fragmented compared to the platforms it competes with,” said IHS Technology research director and report author, Maria Rua Aguete.

Overall, Germany and the UK were the largest European cable markets in terms of revenue, generating €4.7 billion and €4 billion respectively.

The European Broadband Cable Yearbook was produced by IHS Markit in association with trade body Cable Europe.