Digitisation to bring a sea change in TV industry

Written by fe Bureau | Mumbai | Updated: Aug 4 2010, 06:05am hrs
The complete switchover of the Indian television industry from analog to digital will be a regulatory changeover and the biggest trigger in consolidating the fragmented LCO (local cable operators) market, says a report from IDFC Securities. There are 105 million cable and satellite homes; but there is limited monetisation owing to unreported revenues from the cable industry. The industry reported only Rs 5,520 crore in revenues, while the actual would be much more.

Recently, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) has announced a sunset date of December 2013 for complete digitisation. Digital transmission enhances audio and picture quality and the sooner the transformation process takes place, the more beneficial it will be for the broadcasting sector in the country.

Ronnie Screwvala, CEO, UTV Software Communications, said with the spurt in the number of DTH (direct-to-home) households in India, the overall industry has seen a remarkable growth in the country. The country is set to emerge as the worlds largest DTH subscribed nation when it surpasses the US (32 million DTH subscribers) in the next 12 months. India has a DTH subscriber base of around 25 million in just four years.

Sam Balsara, CMD, Madison World, said digitalisation and advertising have a direct link to a considerable extent. Digitalisation holds the key to the rate at which advertising will grow.

For the media, the revenue model used to be 50:50, that is, 50% revenue would come from readers and 50% from advertisements. However, today, the ratio is 80:20.