MultiChoice Sees Off TopTV Threat For Now


MultiChoice added almost more than 360 000 new subscribers in SA in the six months to 30 September 2010, beating its new rival TopTV in May.

Interim financial results show that the pay-TV operator added 498 000 during the six months from April to September across its Africa operations.

In SA, the gross base expanded by 363 000 to 3,2m households. Most of the growth came from the lower-priced Compact bouquet. In the rest of sub-Saharan Africa, the base grew by 135 000 to 1,2m homes.

The strong growth was attributed mainly to the 2010 soccer World Cup. But decoder subsidies and extensive marketing also boosted the numbers. However, the growth spurt caused by the World Cup will not recur soon, says MultiChoice.

Operating margins came under pressure due to cost pressures from growing the subscriber base as well as “intense competition” and increased costs to acquire sports rights.

On the recent launch of DStv Mobile in SA, MultiChoice says it regards this as an “experimental service that will incur losses for many years”. — Staff reporter, TechCentral