The Mac Observer

7 September 2018 - 12:43pm -- Olga De Giovanni

Thomas Thomson was quoted in The Mac Observer in an article on Amazon’s coverage of the US Open tennis. Viewers complained of poor audio and video quality, but Thomas says that “These issues are a recurring theme, not just for Amazon, for other new entrants in sports video. Amazon has had a brief history of playback and picture quality issues with last years livestream of NFL Thursday Night Football; YouTube TV suffered regional outages in its World Cup coverage in the summer; and, Perform Group’s [experienced] high-profile problems in Italy with the Serie A [Italy’s top soccer league] over the last fortnight.” Starting next year, Amazon will be broadcasting 20 coveted Premier League football (soccer in the U.S.) matches on Prime. While there is time to correct the problems seen at the US Open, Thomas said there are “most certainly” concerns. “This will be a key litmus test for sports OTT as a sector,” he said. “Whilst their outlay on this Premier League package was low, the reputational risk is significant. The User Interface will need to be revamped, and if they can’t deliver at least an SD quality picture to 100% of viewers, then they will not be able to realistically compete with Sky and BT with traditional satellite and cable transmissions.”

Japan's recorded music market starts to stream

Recorded music revenues in Japan are stuck in decline as physical sales sag, although 2017 marks the first year when streaming gained a foothold with 8 million subscribers. 

J-pop fans spend on 'experiences' with their idols including events, merchandise, CDs and DVDs, which streaming cannot replicate. Top native LINE MUSIC offers integration with a popular messaging app and bundling with mobile. 

Digiday

5 September 2018 - 11:47am -- Olga De Giovanni

In an article on Immediate Media’s acquisition of BBC Good Food, Digiday quoted Douglas McCabe. According to Douglas, it was a foreseeable transition. “It’s a great brand — in print, online and as a live event — and understandable that BBC Studios would want to hang on to it, but in the end Immediate Media provides a more natural home.”

Euronews

4 September 2018 - 1:56pm -- Olga De Giovanni

Claire Enders was quoted in a Euronews. article on the announcement of Mark Read as the new WPP CEO. "The conditions under which Martin left were such that there is a premium in appointing someone who knows the ropes and can smooth things down," analyst Claire told Reuters, ahead of the announcement.

Marketing Week

4 September 2018 - 1:33pm -- Olga De Giovanni

Matti Littunen was quoted in Marketing Week in an article on WPP’s appointment of Mark Read as the new CEO. Focused less on cost-cutting and more on client relationships, Read strikes a stark contrast with Martin Sorrel, and is set to revolutionise the WPP business model. Matti says “Starting from the needs of the clients and integrating capabilities sounds good, but is very difficult to do in practice across a large holding group structure. However, Mark Read has experience of integrating very different types of teams as he helped turn Wunderman from a direct marketing agency to a more holistic digital shop (absorbing several agencies along the way). I liked the phrase ‘we won’t let our own structures distract us or get in the way’ – most effective treatments start from the right diagnosis, and this one is spot on.”

The Guardian

3 September 2018 - 11:12am -- Olga De Giovanni

Alex Fenton was quoted in The Guardian in an article on the competition between the BBC’s Bodyguard and ITV’s Vanity Fair. “Premium drama remains the crown jewel content for broadcasters and streaming services. It has become a fiercely competitive arena over recent years, and its importance has only increased as the deep-pocketed Netflixes and Amazons of the world have entered the fray,” said Alex. “The competition for eyeballs has opened up and driven up production costs and standards, and bigger, better dramas are a good way for content providers to differentiate themselves.” He said there was still a substantial value for traditional channels to make appointment television that brings in viewers at a set time every week. “ITV tends to skew older in its viewership, but younger viewers tend to be the most valuable demographics to advertisers, so any content which can reassure younger people of the relevance of broadcast television programming is a big win for them.”

Commercial TV impact trends: better than viewing trends, worse than ideal

There has been no shortage of attention paid to declining TV viewing over recent years, but much of it focuses on overall viewing time rather than advertising delivery 

This is to overlook the engine driving most of the UK’s television industry. Commercial impact delivery has held up well relative to overall viewing, and is strong for certain key demographics

Campaign

28 August 2018 - 12:04pm -- Olga De Giovanni

Claire Enders was quoted in a Campaign article speculating on WPP’s next CEO. Alongside other analysts she backs Mark Read – currently the joint Chief Operating Officer - to take over. Claire said: "I think in the very difficult, unique circumstances [of Sorrell’s abrupt departure], it really requires an insider. Mark has a plan that he’s presented to the board and it’s the only plan I’d proceed with." It would involve "cost-cutting", "deeper thinking", a "more aggressive" approach and "essentially reducing the number of people in all these companies whose roles overlap.” She expects a "complete change of strategy" and predicts WPP will halt its decades-long approach of using acquisitions – what she described as "buying, buying, buying" – to drive growth. She also added that "keeping the company financially safe" and "not taking risks" are priorities for the £16bn group, which has £5bn of debt. "The whole solvency issue is really important to WPP," she said.

UK broadband, telephony and pay TV trends Q2 2018: Great volume, shame about the ARPU

UK broadband subscriptions re-accelerated in Q2, bucking a three-year downward trend, but market revenue growth still fell as BT’s overlapping price increase dropped out and all of the operators continued to struggle to meaningfully grow ARPU

Regular existing customer price increases and continued (but slowing) migration to high speed are being cancelled out by flat-to-down new customer pricing, and the frequent need to discount existing customers down to these levels to retain them

FYI Music News

23 August 2018 - 3:34pm -- Olga De Giovanni

Douglas McCabe was quoted in an FYI Music News article on the latest media movements. Despite the decline in print advertising somelarge-scale companies are expressing optimism. “In the magazine sector as a whole there has been enormous over-supply problem, and why we’ve seen such a car crash in the middle market where advertising has practically collapsed,” says Douglas. “But high-end magazines with a commitment to high-end editorial values, well-heeled demographics and a high-end supply of advertising have been living in a much less volatile market.”

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