DTH

The DTH Opportunity

http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/smartcrop_800x800/public/images/tv-images/2016/10/07/Untitled-1_13.jpg?itok=8lllUlhy

It came somewhat like manna to travellers lost in the desert. The Union Cabinet's decision on 2 November 2000 to lift the four-year ban on DTH has been long- awaited by Indian and foreign broadcasters. And now that it has come, it should open up the floodgates with a slew of them taking a shot at it.



Among those who could make attempts include: Star TV, Zee TV, C. Sivasankaran, Reliance, HFCL, Lalit Modi's Modi Entertainment Group, Sun TV. One cannot exclude tyros attempting to enter the DTH fray. One does not know if all of them will survive.



A lot of thought has gone into the drafting of the notification. It appears as if the government is taking clear steps to prevent the emergence of television monopolies. That is why it has placed a 20 per cent restriction on foreign direct investment, with the total foreign investment being permitted being 49 per cent. Additionally, it has stated broadcasters and cable TV operators - without further explaining whether these players should be operating in India or overseas - will be permitted to hold only 20 per cent in a DTH platform. Now is this 20 per cent the limit for several broadcasting investors in a single DTH venture; or is it the cap that each can have in a DTH venture? Will we see Sony, Star and Zee holding 60 per cent in a DTH operation or will they be permitted to hold just 6.33 per cent each - totting up to 20 per cent? This is an issue that will need clarification.



If one takes these clauses at face value then Star TV, Zee TV, Sun TV, Eenadu, Sony will simply have to be satisfied with a minority stake each in a platform. It would not be surprising if three of them choose to come together for a new DTH operational company. The other option they will have is to become innovative in the equity holding pattern and incorporation of the DTH firm. With penalties of Rs 500 million one wonders whether they will take the risk? Hence it is more likely that unusual alliances are going to be formed, which one never thought possible in the past.



The government has also made it mandatory for the DTH operator to uplink from within Indian shores within 12 months to any satellite, be it foreign or Indian. Preferential treatment will be given to those uplinking to Indian birds, the notification says. An open architecture has been mandated with the set top box working with the smart cards and encryption technologies that the various operators choose to use. This is a big plus for consumers as they will be able to switch between services easily or subscribe to more than one.



Licence fees of Rs 100 million and a bank guarantee of Rs 400 million are not all that high at all. What could prove high is the 10 per cent revenue share that DTH operators will have to dole out to government each year. Sure the operator will build this into its subscription fees; but should targets of subscription be failed to be met; things could get quite tough.Remember, there will be fierce competition between the various services with each of them trying to woo subscribers with freebies and price-off offers. If such a scenario arises, 10 per cent could be the company's margin which would mean that the DTH company will end up making losses. It's quite likely the DTH company will make losses anyway for the first two-to-three years because the market will have to be created. And there's already a relatively cheaper option available in cable TV which is priced at Rs 150-200.



Of course, the government has protected the state-owned broadcaster Prasar Bharati by mandating carriage of all its channels at the most favourable terms provided to an occupant of the platform.



The I&B ministry's programming and advertising code will have to be followed to a T, the notification states. The problem is that a watchdog and adjudicator have yet to be set up. And if the government is banking on the convergence authority to keep tabs on content, it will have to move fast and enact convergence regulation.



How many platforms can coexist in India? Indications are that just one or two and if one stretches one's imagination, three. There's just not enough content in terms of programming going around. Not many channels are going to take the option of getting exclusively onto DTH, after all cable TV offers them their lifeblood revenue, either in the form of subscription or advertising. They have stuck it out for so long; bleeding in the Indian market for seven years to build up a cable TV business. They will not throw it away for DTH. What one will see is the development of new channels with diverse programmes - both old and new shows - being packaged innovatively for the DTH platform. Other niche channels will also be developed.



One advantage is that set top boxes have become cheaper over the past three years and are priced at anywhere between Rs 5,000 and Rs 10,000 (it could be lower should the DTH provider gives a higher subsidy). Three years ago, the sticker price was a hefty Rs 20,000-25,000. Monthly subscription packages could range from Rs 200 going up to Rs 350.



The DTH market on the upside is about two to three million strong, with 350,00 of them likely to come on board in year one. This could go up to 700,000 in year two and finally to a million in year three. The two million could take up to six to seven years to achieve. Or even longer. One can't forget: cable TV will be fighting back. As will other newer options, such as broadband, which will make their appearance.

Latest Reads

http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/03/22/Planetcast-800x800.jpg?itok=K1_lgkLz
AION Capital to acquire majority interest in PlanetCast Media Services

NEW DELHI: AION Capital Partners Limited (the “AION Fund”) is to acquire a majority interest in PlanetCast Media Services Limited (earlier known as Essel Shyam Communications Limited) from shareholders including affiliates of the Essel Group, the Shyam Group and private equity firm Kubera Partners...

DTH DTH Services
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/03/17/Paolo-Agostinelli.jpg?itok=bepJSWAT
Tata Sky brings global content for Indians, premiering Gomorrah on 19 Mar

Tata Sky brings global content for Indians, premiering Gomorrah on 19 Mar

DTH DTH Operator
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/03/14/dishtv%26videocond2h.jpg?itok=6Bf9eWDS
Dish TV Videocon Ltd. may start operations in Sept '17

MUMBAI: With no roadblocks apprehended and approvals going ahead, the new merged direct-to-home (DTH) behemoth may start operations in September 2017. As reported by www.indiantelevision.com earlier, the new merged entity Dish TV Videocon Ltd. is set to create the single-largest DTH company in...

DTH DTH Operator
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/03/09/CareView%20%281%29.jpg?itok=b8g5Lo56
CareView becomes Dish Network's private cable operator

CareView Communications, Inc., an information technology provider to the healthcare industry, executed an agreement with Dish Network, LLC, a Colorado company, to become a Private Cable Operator (PCO).

DTH DTH Operator
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/03/09/Jawahar-Goel-800x800.jpg?itok=t4Gf1lM-
Dish TV, Videocon d2h merger: CCI seeks TRAI views

MUMBAI: CCI has sought TRAI's views on the proposed merger of Dish TV and Videocon d2h and as to whether or not the deal, leading to formation of Dish TV Videocon Ltd., will violate anti-trust laws. Dish TV, owned by Zee Entertainment (ZEEL) and the DTH arm of Videocon Industries had in November...

DTH DTH Operator
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/03/06/v2h%20%281%29.jpg?itok=B8qYO9t2
Videocon d2h partners Netflix for HD Smart Connect

Videocon d2h has signed a deal with the internet television network Netflix. With this partnership, Videocon d2h connected box customers will now be able to access seamlessly the extensive library of Netflix TV and movie titles.

DTH DTH Services
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/02/23/charles-ergen-800x800.jpg?itok=RxHacnoe
Dish Network rev flat in '16 despite declining pay-TV subs

BENGALURU:  The fourth largest US pay-TV player Dish Network Corporation (DNC) reported almost flat revenues for the year ended 31 December 2016 (FY-16, current year, quarter ended 31 December 2016 – Q4-16, current quarter) as compared to the previous fiscal. Though Dish reported 2.164 million...

DTH DTH Operator
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/02/21/dish-icici_0.jpg?itok=z4hD2NXx
DishTV partners with ICICI for digital payments

MUMBAI: DishTV has tied up with ICICI Bank by consolidated assets, to make payments and recharges easier. The association enables subscribers of the DTH platform to recharge their connections on any Unified Payment Interface (UPI) enabled app and through *99#, a National Unified USSD Platform (NUUP...

DTH DTH Services
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/02/13/arun%20%281%29.jpg?itok=c99t41lg
DishTV adds Discovery’s sports channel ‘DSports’

DishTV has added the newly launched sports channel ‘DSports’ from the house of Discovery Communications. With this addition, DishTV now offers a total of 13 sports channels in Standard Definition, the highest to be offered by any DTH service provide.

DTH DTH Operator

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories