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June 2018

International News



Former NDS chairman and CEO Abe Peled will be the chairman of a new company created after Cisco sold its Service Provider Video S o f t w a r e Solutions (SPVSS) business to the private equity firm Permira. CISCO's sale includes its Infinite Video Platform, cloud digital video recording, video processing, video security, video middleware, and services groups.

The deal price has not been announced, but is believed to be around $ 1 billion, which is a mere 20% of what CISCO paid Permira to buy NDS in 2012.

As NDS, and through its acquisition of Canal+ Technologies, Dr Peled's former company was responsible for many innovations including the development of the personal video recorder that was branded as Sky+.


Comcast is reportedly planning to an all cash bid of $ 60 billion for 21st Century Fox, against Walt Disney's offer of $52.4 billion. The all-cash bid prevents Murdoch from owning any future stake in the new company.

Comcast CEO Brian Roberts plans to proceed with the hostile bid if the USA authorities approve the $85 billion AT&T-Time Warner deal. The U.S. Department of Justice has opposed the AT&T-Time Warner deal over antitrust concerns, and a decision from U.S. District Court Judge Richard Leon is expected in June.

Disney's bid is a stock swap, giving Murdoch stock holding in Disney, which he could leverage to gain control of the expanded Disney.

This magazine (SCaT) has speculated that Disney's bid is a ploy that will eventually put Murdoch as the CEO of Disney, without regulatory hurdles, providing him control of not only his existing Fox assets but also of Disney, which is headed by an ageing CEO Bob Iger, who is long overdue for retirement.

Murdoch owns 17% stake in Fox but 40% of the voting power.

Comcast's un-expected bids for FOX and Sky has upset Murdoch's apple-cart, and he is doing his best to reject the Comcast offers, even though they are for a larger, full cash payment!


Lachlan M u r d o c h , the eldest son of Rupert Murdroch , will head Fox after Fox sells most of its assets to Disney.

Lachlan will be both the CEO and Chairman of the new company which may be renamed 'New Fox.'

Rupert Murdoch will be Cochairman, alongside his son. John Nallen, currently Fox's CFO will take on the expanded role of COO. these details were mentioned in a company statement.

James Murdoch, the current CEO will move to head Disney.

SCaT has opined that Murdoch will not lose effective control of his 21st Century Fox empire but will infact retain that and even take control of Disney!

Supporting this theory is the fact that Murdoch has refused to sell to Comcast, who is offering a higher price, paid full cash, rather than an equity swap from Disney.


Comcast, the world's largest MSO, has bid 16% more than Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox - paid full cash - for Sky.

Fox owns 39% of Sky and submitted its bid to take full control in December 2016 but the deal has been delayed by regulatory issues.

Comcast's bid includes pledges to keep Sky's HQ in London & guarantees the editorial independence and funding of Sky News for at least 10 years.

"We are determined to be responsible and trusted owners of Sky," Brian Roberts, the chair and chief executive of Comcast, said. Comcast will also not acquire a majority interest in any UK newspaper for at least 5 years.


An estimated 29.2 million people woke up early to see TV actress Meghan Markle marry Britain's Prince Harry, according to Nielsen.

Prince William's marriage to Kate Middleton in 2011 attracted 22.8 million viewers.

When Princess Diana married Prince Charles, Nielsen only counted households. That 1981 wedding was watched in 14.2 million households. The latest royal wedding was seen in 23.7 million homes.


Belgian Dutch language public broadcaster VRT is discontinuing its DVB-T broadcasts on December 1, citing "changing media consumption usage."

This will impact VRT's 3 main channels En, Canvas and Ketnet, that are now available FTA across the country.

According to the broadcaster, just 45,000 people currently use the DTT broadcasts as their means of reception, which costs more than EUR1 million a year to sustain.

VRT said it now wants to invest the money into its free-to-use VRT Nu online platform which has 1,125,000 registered users. VRT Nu offers live streams of all the channels as well as added functionality such as catch-up via the EPG as well as selected ondemand programming.

Viewers in Belgium will continue to have access to Antenne TV, the pay DVB-T2 service from M7 Group, which launched in December 2017. For Euro 9.95 per month, Antenne TV offers 15 channels via DVB-T2 including all private Belgian TV channels. There is a possibility that M7 will negotiate a distribution deal to bring the 3 VRT channels to the platform.


According to the Global Pay TV Operator Forecasts report, the Pay TV market will shrink & fragment significantly in by 2023. Pay TV subscriptions for 517 operators with 747 platforms [132 digital cable, 126 analogue cable, 286 satellite, 137 IPTV and 66 DTT] across 135 countries were covered in the report. The 1,006 million Pay subscribers in 2017 are expected to inch upto 1,100 million in 2023.

Despite adding 84 million subscribers between 2017 and 2023, subscription and PPV revenues for the world's top 517 pay TV operators will fall by $18 billion to $183 billion.

29 pay TV operators' revenues exceed $1 billion in 2017, but this will drop to 25 operators by 2023, indicating a fragmentation of the market share away from the larger operators. The top 10 operators will actually loose $20 billion in revenues; bringing their total down to $87 billion, a loss of market share f4rom 53% (2017) to 48% (2023).

Seven of the top 10 losers will be in the US, while China Telecom will gain $1.4 billion. n