Page 2: Multi channel growth in the UK
When choosing Sky TV, consumers subscribe to a multi-channel package which enables them to watch a range of general entertainment and specialist channels. Today, Sky TV offers more than 40 channels to viewers. Multichannel subscription has expanded at a rapid rate - in December 1989, only 3.3% of television owners in the UK subscribed to multi-channel TV. By December 1996, almost six million households, approximately 15 million individuals, watched Sky TV. By April 1997, 25% of television homes had subscribed to Sky.
Given the right pricing strategy, any organisation that reaches a critical mass of sales should then see this success translate into growing profits. This has clearly been the case for BSkyB. The following figures show that, in financial terms, BSkyB achieved its critical mass at the end of 1992. BSkyB’s growth rate clearly indicates that it is in tune with consumer demand. It is dynamic and entrepreneurial, seeking to anticipate and meet consumer demand for a varied and exciting entertainment mix, delivered directly to consumers’ homes.
It is important for business organisations to identify their buying publics or ‘target markets.’ Research carried out in 1997 revealed that over 35% of adults between 16 and 34 subscribe to Sky TV and nearly 40% of males in this age range. Independent research carried out by BARB, (the industry research body used by all broadcasters), projects that these figures will continue to rise over the next few years, so that by the year 2001:
- 50% of all individual television watchers will be Sky TV subscribers.
- 67% of men in the 16-34 year old age group will be Sky TV subscribers.
Research also indicates that satellite television is also particularly popular for young families with children – an attractive market for many advertisers.
In addition to private subscriptions, the out-of-home viewing subscriptions are very important to BSkyB Ltd and its advertisers. Many people without private subscriptions watch Sky TV in the 44,000 pubs and clubs that subscribe to Sky Sports. Over 2.5 million people watched England play Italy in the World Cup qualifier in February 1997 on Sky in pubs, clubs, hotels, etc.