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Rigorous Fearless Independent

This report is free to access.

Female-led and equally-led employers numbered 550,000 in the UK in 2019, a 40% share of 1.4 million businesses. These are often sub-scale businesses requiring financial and digital skills to scale up.

Female-led businesses cluster in education, health, food and accommodation, the latter being highly exposed to the pandemic. The more protected and dynamic ICT sector has low female engagement, which higher levels of study of STEM subjects will remedy.

Consumers are embracing digital to live and work through the pandemic. Enterprises that are digital and digitally-enabled will survive and flourish, supported by initiatives from Google, Facebook and others.

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Francois said “If Salto reaches 1 million subscribers in three years without the boxes, we can say that it is a success. By comparison, TV Now and Videoland, of the RTL group in Germany and the Netherlands, have nearly 1.8 million subscribers in total."

He added that the first offer at 6.99 euros for a screen (and up to 12.99 euros for four users) “is the same as that of Disney +, while the catalog is much less rich!"

Joseph said "People are doing reiki sessions online, yoga online, medical consultations over video calls. That has got people very excited about the idea of being able to scale up what were events that were dependent on how many people you could get through your door. Now people are thinking that maybe the market for this is actually a lot bigger."

He added "Zoom has grown really impressively… but a lot of that usage is unmonetised - it's free users on 40-minute calls."

"That's the classic tech business model. Create a marketplace, and then you skim off a bit of the value. The big question to my mind is: when things go back to normal, in the long term, is there still the demand for all these sort of [virtual] events?"

Tom said "Assuming that the cinemas were still operational and people still had the same appetite for going, Disney would still make a whole lot more in the short term by putting these blockbusters on at the cinema,"

He added "But in a few years when they have maybe hundreds of millions of subscribers, who are paying a whole lot more than £5 a month each, then you are talking about turning a massive profit. To do that, you really need to go in it hard, and this is a statement of intent that they are prepared to look at that."

STV now has a clear pathway to reduce its reliance on linear advertising by investing in production, while pushing the transition to digital forward with a UK-wide footprint.

To that end, STV Player has some momentum and recent production company acquisitions, increasing external commissions and PSB Out of London quotas should ensure STV Studios returns to growth in 2021.

Such development is imperative: COVID-19 has accelerated structural change in viewing habits meaning now that content must not only be great, but available widely and immersed in a smooth user experience just to have a chance.


It is widely expected that Apple will announce the first 5G iPhone at its event on 13 October, over a year after the UK launch of 5G networks, in contrast to Apple’s early start and key role in the launch of 4G

While the UK operators were early to launch 5G, the roll-out has thus far progressed slower than 4G did

The operator focus on 5G continues to be capacity as opposed to services, with 5G offering eye-watering speeds but not enabling any mass-market consumer services that 4G is not perfectly capable of


Claire said “The last auction was post-peak, the takings were down and we expect that to continue. Sky and BT overpaid for rights in the past and BT has suffered a decline in its value. Now the UK sports broadcasters are trying to think about reducing their rights costs."

She added “Auctions are emotional affairs and in the past, BT has always blinked and written a  cheque. But they are now in a stronger position and both companies can afford to offer less. The next auction could lead to a five-ten per cent decline in the rights values in the UK.”