Mon, Jan 24, 2005 - Page 10 News List

Asian pay-TV subscribers rise 7 percent

BLOOMBERG

The number of subscribers to pay-television services in the Asia-Pacific region rose 7 percent last year to US$192.4 million, Hong Kong-based research company Media Partners Asia Ltd said in a report released today.

The percentage of all television households in the region receiving so-called multichannel service at year-end was 34 percent, with the rate expected to rise to 39 percent by 2010 and 42 percent by 2015, Media Partners said in its report.

The increased number of homes with cable, direct-to-home satellite or Internet-based television service means more potential viewers of channels produced by the world's big media companies, such as News Corp and Time Warner Inc.

"Competition and demand, together with greater regulatory clarity and flexibility, will unlock greater value in the distribution of broadband services and multichannel television programming in Asia," Vivek Couto, Media Partners' director of content & research, said in a statement.

Total sales by the pay-television industry in Asia was US$18.6 billion last year, 14 percent more than a year earlier, the report said. Japan was the most lucrative market with US$5.9 billion in revenue, followed by China with US$3.5 billion.

China was the region's biggest market, with 105 million households at year-end, followed by India with 51.6 million.

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