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  • New
    April 16, 2021

    US content distribution: Studios go direct to consumer

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    Despite relying on a narrow IP base, US content production is booming, overwhelming other markets and seeking alternative distribution to cinemas. Responding to the rise of Netflix and Amazon Prime, studios seek to shift distribution from wholesale to retail—but only Disney may succeed. Most content is likely to remain accessed by consumers through bundles. Provided they engage with aggregation, European broadcasters can adjust to the new studio model.
  • New
    April 15, 2021

    Venture Insights NZ survey 2021: Mobile media use and telco oppor [...]

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    Venture Insights performs an annual consumer survey on mobile media and mobile gaming across New Zealand (NZ). It asks questions around video streaming that consumers use, willingness to pay services, mobile gaming, and implications for 5G and telcos. Our latest survey was conducted in March 2021 with 1,009 New Zealand respondents, and the key findings have been presented here. The survey results show that there is a significant and growing segment of consumers using mobile to watch video services, including sport. The share of respondents that never watch mobile video has fallen significantly over the last year. Further, there is a persistent opportunity for telcos to upsell 5G services to both video viewers and gamers.
  • April 8, 2021

    Venture Insights AU survey 2021: Consumer interest in mobile medi [...]

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    Venture Insights performs an annual consumer survey on mobile media and mobile gaming across Australia. It asks questions around video streaming services the consumers use, willingness to pay for video streaming services, mobile gaming, and implications for 5G and telcos. Our latest Australia survey was conducted in March 2021, and the key findings are presented here. The survey results show that there is a significant and stable segment of consumers using mobile to watch video services, including sport, that remans unaffected by the impact of the pandemic. Further, there is a persistent opportunity for telcos to upsell 5G services to both video viewers and gamers.
  • April 8, 2021

    The recovery stutters: UK broadband, telephony and pay TV trends [...]

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    • Market revenue growth sunk back to -3% in Q4 from -2% in Q3, with further backbook pricing and lockdown effects to blame.
    • Backbook pricing will improve with numerous price increases announced, but these will only start to take effect in Q2 2021.
    • Demand for broadband and ultrafast looks promising, but will also take time to filter through to revenue, with Q1 again lockdown affected.

  • April 1, 2021

    Pandemic accelerates mobile payments in New Zealand

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    Payments has emerged as a key area of digital disruption. The shift from physical to electronic payments has seen an ever-expanding range of payment methods replacing cash. From mobile banking and contactless cards to phone payments and bespoke apps, the payment landscape is undergoing a quiet revolution. The emergence of e-commerce and proximity payment and the increasing adoption of smartphones and high-speed mobile data network have further boosted the adoption of mobile payment. Smartphone technology has lowered barriers to entry and enabled new entrants to take on traditional financial services firms by unbundling payments from account-holding and lending, and by offering more targeted products and customer experiences. Incumbent payments providers, principally banks, have responded by launching their own online payment services.
  • March 30, 2021

    (UK) Ecommerce forecasts 2021: Pandemic shifts remain for now

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    • Goods ecommerce accelerated in 2020 by four years above trend to reach 28% of retail sales (excl. fuels) from 19% in 2019. We anticipate that ecommerce in 2021 will remain in the same share range of 27-29%
    • Food and drink grew faster than any online category in 2020, doubling to over 10% of associated sales. Aside from food and drink, the agony of zero sales on the shuttered high street continued, with over half of all sales being online in 2020, likely persisting in Q1 2021
    • Offline retailing will recover due to deconfinement and the share of ecommerce will edge down in Q2 2021 and thereafter, but these new shopping habits will be sticky and anchored by persistent work-from-home, driving all retailers that are left standing to massively adopt online channels and associated advertising media
  • March 25, 2021

    Venture Insights Consumer Survey: COVID-19 boosting mobile payme [...]

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    Payment services have been subjected to significant disruption in recent years. New entrants have exploited the prevalence of smartphones to offer their own app-based payment services. Smartphone technology has lowered barriers to entry and enabled new entrants to take on traditional financial services firms by unbundling payments from account-holding and lending, and by offering more targeted products and customer experiences. Incumbent payments providers, principally banks, have responded by launching their own online payment services.
  • March 25, 2021

    UK’s Creative Industries: Boosting the regional economy

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    • The Creative Industries accounted for 6% of UK GVA in 2019, more than the automotive, aerospace, life sciences and oil and gas industries combined. The UK’s Creative Industries are the largest in Europe and are central to promoting the UK’s soft power globally.
    • At the core of the creative economy is the AV sector, which, in turn, is driven by the UK’s PSBs. In 2019, the PSBs were responsible for 61% of primary commissions outside London and are the pillar upon which much additional regional economic activity depends.
    • Going forward, only the PSBs are likely to have the willingness and scale to invest in production centres outside London with sufficient gravitational pull to reorientate the wider creative economy towards the nations and regions.
  • March 25, 2021

    A worthwhile flurry of activity? Mobile towers companies in focus

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    • The wave of deal-making in the European towers sector is driven by cash-strapped telcos seeking a form of sale and leaseback financing
    • While the operators are incentivised to provide a medium-term growth trajectory for these towers companies, sustainability of that growth is more questionable, especially as 5G will not require additional base stations
    • Cellnex continues to insinuate itself into the UK market with its most recent deal signaling the ultimate unwinding of the MBNL JV. Further UK towers consolidation seems a long way off but could facilitate, or indeed be facilitated by, consolidation at the MNO level
  • March 18, 2021

    Programmatic will drive future OOH growth, but Google competition [...]

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    Outdoor, or out-of-home (OOH), advertising is distinct from other forms of advertising. It is highly visible, often very large, and placed in heavily trafficked areas in order to attract as many viewers as possible. Moreover, unlike television, radio, print, internet, and mail advertising, outdoor advertising cannot be turned off, put away or easily avoided.
  • March 11, 2021

    Nine, SevenWest results reflect COVID19 rebound, transition to di [...]

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    The recent Nine and Seven results highlight the impact of COVID19 and digital transformation. Free to air (FTA) broadcasters have traditionally played a dominant role in aggregating television content from multiple content owners and creators. However, over the last decade, the growth of subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) has driven significant transformation in TV viewing habits. Audiences today have unprecedented choice when it comes to content and how to watch it.
  • March 3, 2021

    O2 :Trending nicely, outlook challenging

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    • All of O2’s operational metrics ticked up this quarter with service revenue growth, continued strong net adds and OIBDA growth particular highlights in spite of the end of O2’s Carphone Warehouse relationship
    • Next quarter will be hit by the prolonged lockdown and, in spite of an improving picture thereafter, there remain several challenges particularly lower in-contract price rises than peers and some pressure on MVNO revenues post Sky MVNO renegotiation
    • The merger with Virgin Media appears on track for a mid-year approval. O2 management will need to work hard to sustain their sharp operational focus at a time when merger integration and strategic question marks risk diverting much of their attention
  • February 24, 2021

    Sports rights market hits an inflection point: New distribution p [...]

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    The fire smouldering beneath the traditional sports broadcasting model burst into flame in 2020. We have argued that sports rights payments in the ANZ market were not sustainable. The rising value of deals could not be reconciled with falling broadcast TV revenues. In this report, we discuss the current state of the Australian sports rights market, delve into the current struggle of traditional broadcasters, and contemplate what is next for the delivery of sports content.
  • February 22, 2021

    Vodafone: Leverage looms large

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    • Generating cash is top of Vodafone’s agenda right now, and we may be seeing early signs of that driving operational tactics ahead of resolving its leverage crisis through either an IPO of Vantage or a sale of its Iberian assets
    • EBITDA growth would really help. Analyst forecasts of +4% for next year are not supported by recent history and a simple bounce-back of roaming revenues should not be assumed
    • Q3 results were a mixed bag with the very slight improvement in revenue trends accounted for by easing roaming pressure. Green shoots in German fixed is a highlight, with growth in UK mobile a touch disappointing
  • February 18, 2021

    BT: A bumpy road

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    • BT’s December quarter results were mixed, with revenue growth improving but EBITDA growth worsening, and next quarter will be hit by the effects of lockdown 3 on mobile, with B2B likely to be hit by business failures following the end of furlough
    • BT has maintained/nudged up its financial guidance regardless, and there are plenty of positive longer-term signs, with subscriber growth strong in the quarter, pricing pressure easing, and full fibre roll-out and adoption progressing nicely
    • Overall, we expect the road to continue to be bumpy, but a recovery by 2022/23 still seems very plausible, ultimately driven by the wholesale and retail benefits of full fibre, and perhaps helped if it can get ‘Digital’ right, a particular challenge historically for BT
  • February 15, 2021

    Telstra 1H21 update reflects industry trends

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    Telstra reported earnings on 12th February 2021. In this report, we have summarised the earnings update. In our view the results are consistent with the top telco trends in 2021 that we identified earlier this year.
  • February 12, 2021

    Video viewing survey: household consumption across formats to rem [...]

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    Venture Insights conducted a video consumer survey in late November/early December 2020 in collaboration with Swinburne University of Technology. The survey was conducted nationally for 1,003 respondents, with a representative survey sample across demographic and regional groupings. Those respondents who watch free to air TV, pay TV, catch-up TV or SVOD services qualified to participate in this survey.
  • February 10, 2021

    Games and COVID-19: Demand boom eases production challenges

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    The pandemic has caused an unprecedented demand boom and revenue windfall for the games industry, allowing developers to ease production bottlenecks, assist remote working, and spend more cash on games that matter. Producing quality game experiences remotely—from greenlight through to release—has driven innovation and flexibility, and much needed change for game studios. Most large game developers expect a return to in-studio development late in Q3 2021. Many workers hope a return will not also bring back toxic game production environments.
  • 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 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.
  • January 4, 2021

    Steady now, brighter outlook: European mobile in Q3 2020

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    • Mobile growth improved very marginally to -3.6% this quarter as roaming revenues were harder hit and competitive intensity bounced back, but usage recovered from the lockdowns in Q2 and cuts to intra-EU calls were annualised
    • Italy’s fortunes took a turn for the worse as roaming hit particularly hard and Iliad resurged. After a spate of downgrades to the outlook last quarter, there were some tentative upgrades in Q3 although the tone remains cautious
    • The diminished drag from roaming is the primary positive driver from here. Although lockdowns of some degree are in place in Q4, their impact will be less severe than those in Q2
  • December 16, 2020

    Brighter outlook: UK mobile market in Q3 2020

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    The UK mobile market outlook is better as the COVID impact eases overall thanks to reduced roaming impact, but the November lockdown (including store closures) will drag. Having become more cautious last quarter, many of the European operators, including BT and Vodafone, have edged their EBITDA outlook up very slightly.
    • Service revenue declines stabilised at -7% this quarter with a myriad of factors at play: roaming worsening, the end of lockdown taking some pressure off, B2B a mixed bag, and the annualisation of cuts to intra-EU calls
    • Ofcom’s second 5G auction will be a focus in January. We expect selective bidding, proceeds of up to £2.7bn, and some wrangling over spectrum trading
    • The outlook is better from here as the drag from roaming eases, in contract price rises step up from the spring, Carphone Warehouse diminishes as a factor in the market, and the prospect of consolidation is still on the table