Eastern Europe Ups Digital Pay-TV Service

When the Disney+ subscription streaming video service expanded into Europe last month, the launch excluded Eastern Europe. Netflix and Amazon Prime Video focus their efforts on countries such Germany, Italy, France, Spain, in addition to the United Kingdom and Scandinavia. And less so in Eastern European countries including Belarus, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, the Ukraine and Russia.

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New data from Digital TV Research suggests Eastern Europe will add about 10 million digital pay-TV subscribers through 2025, bring its total consumer base to 77 million households — down from a peak of 83 million pay-TV households in 2018. The region still had 15.4 million analog cable subscribers by end-2019.

“The number of pay-TV subscribers in Eastern Europe will [increase] to 78 million in 2025,” principal analyst Simon Murray said in a statement. “Migration married with low birth rates mean that populations will fall in 14 of the 22 countries that we cover between 2019 and 2025.”

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Eastern Europe to Top 26 Million SVOD Subscribers by 2024

Eastern Europe is finally getting the over-the-top video bug.

New data from Digital TV Research says the region will have 26.19 million SVOD subscriptions by 2024; up from 10 million subs at the end of 2018.

Russia will account for 8.77 million subscriptions, with Poland adding 6.32 million. Together, they will account 58% of the region’s total.

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The report suggests Russia became the SVOD subscription [an SVOD subscriber can have more than one subscription] market leader in 2018 by overtaking Poland. However, it will take until 2023 for Russia to generate greater SVOD revenue than Poland as its subscribers pay lower fees.

By comparison, Netflix will have 8 million subs across 22 Eastern European countries by 2024, double its 2018 result and representing 30% of the regional total.

“The imminent launches of both Disney+ and Apple TV+ will further boost the sector,” principal analyst Simon Murray said in a statement. “We forecast nearly 3 million subscribers for Disney+ by 2024. Apple TV+ will be more modest.”