December 24, 2018
Netflix is projected to pass Comcast-owned satellite pay-TV operator Sky in subscribers by the end of the year, according to new data from Ampere Analysis.
The London-based research firm expects Netflix to end 2018 with 9.78 million subscribers compared to 9.64 million for Sky – which is down 55,000 subs from the end of 2017, according to The Guardian.
Netflix entered the U.K. market in 2011 – its second foreign market after Canada. The SVOD pioneer launched global access (130 countries) in January 2016.
Ofcom, media regulator in the U.K., in July projected Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Sky’s Now TV over-the-top video service would reach a combined 15.4 million subs by the end of the year – surpassing 15.1 million pay-TV subs.
With British-centric programming at the core of American SVOD services such as BritBox and Acorn TV, Ofcom in November called on U.K. public TV broadcasters to join forces to create a competing over-the-top video platform.
The U.K. represents the second-largest SVOD markets for Netflix and Prime Video.
“It does indicate the growing power of subscription video-on-demand services that Netflix has managed to achieve greater household reach in the U.K. than one of the most successful satellite TV companies in the world,” Ampere analyst Richard Broughton said in a statement.
At the same time, Broughton says Sky’s average-revenue-per-subscriber (ARPU) dwarfs Netflix.
“Netflix makes just £7.99 a subscriber; Sky makes on average almost £50 per subscriber per month,” he said.