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Latest Reports

Venture Insights reports inform and enable better decision making through independent, objective, and high quality insights, analysis and thought leadership across the media, digital and telco industries in Australia and New Zealand and with global insight from our European partner, Enders.

  • New
    January 22, 2021

    Netflix Q4 2020 results: 200 million subs with cash piling up

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    Netflix believes that it no longer needs to raise external financing for its day-to-day operations

    This has come quicker than expected: the company had previously gone from the opaque “next few years” narrative it held for some time, to “rapidly closing in” on sustainable positive cashflow just last quarter, meaning that it was a “couple” of years off. One quarter later Netflix is confident its free cash flow will break even in 2021, up $1 billion on its prediction three months ago.
  • New
    January 21, 2021

    Top 5 Telco Trends in 2021

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    2020 was a disruptive year for everyone, including the telecommunications industry. But as a semblance of normality emerges, change in the industry continues unabated. Our top telco trends for 2021 are:  
    1. Low end operator brands seize leadership in the consumer market
    2. Telco infrastructure comes into play as operators seek to monetise assets
    3. Government refocus on regional communications as nbn rollout ends
    4. Enterprise market shift as nbn disrupts the fibre wholesale market
    5. 5G comes into its own as handset availability surges and coverage expands
     
  • New
    January 21, 2021

    (UK) Update 2021: COVID-19 and Mobility

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    • The UK entered 2021 in the grip of a dangerous third wave of the pandemic, despite Lockdown 3.0 over Christmas, driving down trips taken by people to depressed levels last seen in Lockdown 1.0, reducing economic activity for Q1
    • Time spent at home closely tracks the severity of lockdowns and mandates to work from home (WFH). Underpinned by the UK’s advanced digital infrastructure and services, WFH is providing resilience to Gross Value Added (GVA) creation, while staff in B2C activities are furloughed
    • The City of London is emblematic of the potential for outsourced GVA creation under WFH. Its skilled and highly paid staff are too valuable to employers to risk exposure to the virus. WFH, largely preserving GVA, will anchor the future of work
  • New
    January 19, 2021

    (UK) TalkTalk: Mixed results, future opaque

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    • TalkTalk’s latest results were mixed at best, with ARPU and revenue growth improving off a low last quarter, but net adds worsening, EBITDA falling sharply and full year EBITDA guidance suspended
    • Its outlook remains challenging, with the move to high speed still a drag on EBITDA, and the migration to ultrafast a further (even greater) challenge, although this brings opportunity as well, especially if the company can move away from its discount brand focus
    • Its prospective new owners highlight the need to invest in brand, systems, and full fibre capabilities to meet this challenge, but it is not clear where the money to do this is coming from, and it is also not clear if the desire to ‘reposition the brand’ includes a move upmarket
  • January 15, 2021

    Roaming charges to return for some: Free EU roaming an optional e [...]

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    • Lockdown 1.0 in March-April-May 2020 reduced mobility in London to 65% of its pre-pandemic baseline, swelling time spent at home. London’s mobility tracked a similar decline to Paris and New York City, all hugely reliant on public transport
    • Easing lockdowns and good weather slowly led to a mobility recovery through the summer and early autumn, but it sharply declined again after November’s Lockdown 2.0. The mobility decline was greatest in the City of London, which is more acutely affected by working from home
    • Each nation in the UK diverged slightly from September due to varying local policies adopted by England, Wales and Scotland to address their public health crises. Notably however, Lockdown 2.0 did not cause mobility to fall to the same degree as late March
  • January 13, 2021

    Edge Computing – defining the market and business models

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    Edge computing is, fundamentally, the placement of processing and analysis capabilities near the edge of the network close to the sources of data to achieve these objectives. This deployment requires a fairly complex value chain of resources and capabilities. As a result, it is taking time for the structure of the edge computing market to emerge, and for the required partnerships and associated business models to develop. We expect this process will take years, as edge computing grows in scale and sophistication from its current rudimentary beginnings.
  • January 11, 2021

    (UK) Montgomery shakes news market again: JPI, third largest loca [...]

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    The low price paid reflects the dismal prospects for print media, especially regional and local titles relative to national titles. Over the past decade, regional publications were affected at a greater rate than national counterparts by the structural decline of print circulation and advertising, resulting in significantly more closures, as well as issue frequency reductions.
  • January 11, 2021

    Serie A TV rights auction: Deflation looms

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    On Monday, Italy’s Serie A issued its call for tender for its broadcasting rights for the 2021-24 cycle, covering three seasons. Bids are due by 26 January. Currently, Sky holds exclusive coverage of seven games per week with the remaining three fixtures carried by DAZN.
  • January 8, 2021

    Future to buy GoCompare Diversification shifts further to ecommer [...]

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    • Publisher Future paid a premium to acquire listed GoCo, the financial services comparison platform, for a cash and shares deal valued at £594 million, provided GoCo shareholders approve the deal at a vote in January
    • For Future, the purchase of GoCo gives it a platform for consumers for whom the service is free, deepens its tech stack and diversifies revenues to affiliate fees earned from ecommerce
    • Future's strategy of growth by acquisition has helped offset structural decline in the print portion of the business. The question is whether GoCo will generate sufficient returns to justify the premium paid
  • January 8, 2021

    Football rights economics: Low broadcasting competition underpins [...]

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    • Beyond the short-term impact of the COVID crisis, the value of football rights in Europe is heading down
    • Lower competitive intensity in the broadcasting market is the main reason, and looks unlikely to be reversed
    • The leagues must consider long-term initiatives to broaden demand—cash fixes risk worsening their structural problems
  • January 7, 2021

    Battery backup for telco infrastructure: options and necessity

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    The 2019-20 bushfire season has renewed the focus on battery backup for telco infrastructure. About 88% of the tower outages were caused by power failure and only 1% was were due to direct fire damage. Thus, a better power backup could have significantly improved the emergency response during the bushfires by reducing tower outages.
  • December 16, 2020

    Taking Free-to-Air TV online in Australia: opportunities and chal [...]

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    The report is designed to enumerate the key technical, commercial and equity issues that would arise in the course of such a migration, providing insights and identifying problems that would need to be addressed. Amongst other things, this requires an examination of Australia’s digital infrastructure and its capacity to support television distribution, the media and telecommunications business models that would need to be adapted, and the response of households to the changes in consumer technology that would be required. A household survey was also undertaken to inform this report, and details are included in the Appendix. The report is not a proposal that free-to-air television should entirely move to online delivery, nor is it a strategy to get there. Nor is it a cost-benefit analysis.
  • December 15, 2020

    Amazon Prime on Sky Q: Now almost fully aggregated

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    Sky has agreed to host Amazon Prime Video on its platform, effective today. The Amazon app appears in the App section of Sky Q set-top-boxes, which in the UK places it alongside the existing icons of BBC iPlayer, Netflix, Discovery+, Disney+, YouTube and Spotify (it is currently third in prominence).
  • December 10, 2020

    2021 spectrum auction: Uncertainty prevails (UK)

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    COVID, potential consolidation, implications for ALF pricing and non-contiguous blocks have conspired to make the forthcoming second 5G spectrum auction a highly complicated affair.
  • December 9, 2020

    Australian Data Centres and Submarine Cables Outlook

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    Data centres embracing a hyperscale future, driven by cloud migrations and increasing international traffic through submarine cables.
  • December 3, 2020

    Australia Out-of-Home Market Outlook Report

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    The Australian Out-of-Home (OOH) market had been growing continuously until it was hit by COVID in 2020. The market grew at 9% CAGR in the 8 years to FY19 as digital revenues took off but declined by 18% YoY in FY20.
  • December 2, 2020

    Recovery…of sorts: UK broadband, telephony and pay TV trend [...]

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    • Consumer broadband, telephony and pay TV market revenue growth recovered to -2% in Q3 (from -6% in Q2), with the recovery in premium sports channel revenue being partially mitigated by a worsening in backbook pricing pressure at BT
    • This is however still weaker than pre-COVID levels, with said backbooking pricing pressure affecting all operators to some extent, and intensifying as Ofcom-mandated end-of-contract notifications are rolled out, with annual best tariff notification due over the next few months
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  • November 23, 2020

    Vodafone: Bright spots and low lights

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    There are some reasons to be cheerful about Vodafone right now—small nuggets of encouragement in its H1 results and the prospect of some market repair in the UK. Annual in-contract price rises of CPI + 3.9% across the UK mobile sector could provide very valuable support
  • November 18, 2020

    ITV Q3 2020 results: Ads recovering, production may take longer

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    Advertising demand has risen, with total ad revenue down just 7% in Q3, and Q4 expected to be slightly up—this means ITV will be down just over 10% across 2020.

  • November 17, 2020

    Sky UK brings group back on track

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    Sky appears to have weathered the COVID-19 crisis, revealing an encouraging turnaround in its Q3 operating results, with revenue growth flat overall as each stream saw significant improvement from Q2