On 9 and 10 March 2021, Enders Analysis co-hosted the annual Media & Telecoms 2021 & Beyond conference with Deloitte, and sponsored by Barclays and The Financial Times.

With over 50 speakers from the TMT sectors, including leading executives, policy leaders, and industry experts, the conference focused on the impact of the pandemic on society and the TMT sector, decarbonising work, and the post-pandemic recovery.

Over 1,000 attendees enjoyed our first virtual conference and these are edited transcripts ofthe speakers on Day 1, with keynote speeches and sessions on: sustainability in the TMT sector, news media, telecoms, and tech. Videos of the presentations are also available on the conference website.

On 9 and 10 March 2021, Enders Analysis co-hosted the annual Media & Telecoms 2021 & Beyond conference with Deloitte, sponsored by Barclays and The Financial Times.

With over 50 speakers from the TMT sectors, including leading executives, policy leaders, and industry experts, the conference focused on the impact of the pandemic on society and the TMT sector, decarbonising work, and the post-pandemic recovery.

Over 1,000 attendees enjoyed our first virtual conference and these are edited transcripts of the speakers on Day 2, with keynote speakers and sessions on: policy, advertising, video and sports, and video production. Videos of the presentations are also available on the conference website.

Spotify paid $5 billion in royalties last year to the music industry. Critics claim the $0.0038 per-stream average royalty rate is too low. However, this is largely due to high volumes of ad-funded listening, a core part of Spotify’s freemium model, and a defence against piracy. 

To silence the critics, the “Spotify Loud & Clear” site presents data on the distribution of industry royalties, which are heavily skewed to established artists. Only the top 5% of artists generate annual industry royalties above $1,000, though they take home less under their deals. 

The remaining 95% of artists on Spotify generate under $1,000 a year and use the platform mainly to reach fans that attend live gigs, their primary source of income, now halted by the virus. These artists’ problem is digital discovery, as Spotify’s playlists push hits rather than the midlist. 

Google is demonstrating support for news by stepping up its efforts to license content from publishers and provide unpaywalled access within its Google News app—an attempt to diffuse regulatory pressure.

The issue of incentives to sustain scale businesses that originate and distribute high quality news in the digital era is still left unanswered.

Facebook has taken an opposite strategy, banning the sharing of news in Australia on their platforms—a risky, yet calculated move.

National newspaper advertising revenues should be up 6-8% year-on-year in 2010, with ‘popular’ titles in particular attracting display ads from national retailer brands

Local and regional press advertising revenues will fall by about 6% year-on-year, mainly on the continued decline of recruitment classifieds

Publishers are exploring more efficient printing, new digital models, and staking a claim on e-commerce

The digital transition is almost complete in France, five years after the launch of DTT. After undergoing an audience share decline, TF1's share is stabilising. In contrast, M6 improved its audience share during the transition. Both groups are likely to remain dominant in the FTA TV market, thanks to the partial withdrawal of public TV from advertising sales

The advertising recovery in 2010 was strong. Thanks to its diversification, M6 is less exposed to the cycle than TF1, which is rebounding more strongly. M6 is also structurally more profitable

Pay-TV platform growth has stalled, with subscription decline at Canal+ somewhat balanced by growth of low cost packages of IPTV providers. Canal+ will benefit from the withdrawal of Orange from premium TV and a new distribution deal with Orange. Combined with the roll out of new set-tops with PVRs, we are moderately optimistic on Canal+ prospects

Vivendi is close to being in a cash position to buy out minority shareholdings in SFR and Canal+, shedding the image of a ‘conglomerate’ of partly owned and diverse assets, which has weighed on valuation Acquiring Vodafone’s 44% stake in SFR (now only a question of price) would allow Vivendi to rebrand itself as a telecoms story, serving France, with Maroc Télécom and mainly Brazil’s GVT supplying the upside To fully acquire Canal+, Vivendi’s offer will need to consider Lagardère’s option of floating its 20% stake. Owning 100% of Canal+ and SFR opens the narrative of a ‘French media/telecoms champion’ – which we find less credible

This report on Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland, News Corporation’s Continental Europe pay-TV assets, complements our coverage of BSkyB in the UK. We look at the market environment, including regulation and competition. The report also provides subscriber, revenue and earnings forecasts and SWOT analysis.

Strong FY 2010 adjusted revenue growth of 11% was powered by a 15% rise in subscription revenues, reflecting a mixture of solid subscriber growth in spite of the recession and burgeoning multi-product sales, with HD subscriptions registering a net increase of 1.63 million to end the year at 2.94 million and the telecoms sector breaking into operating profit in Q4

Firm cost control and streamlining of manufacturing and subscriber management expenses now make Sky’s 25% TV operating margin target look very achievable, but also leave it room to increase spend on programming substantially within the guidance limits of pegging increases to the rate of revenue growth

Overshadowing the results is News Corp’s proposal to purchase the 60.9% of BSkyB shares that it does not already own, subject to regulatory review. Assuming it goes ahead, News Corp will have a larger market share in the UK across media (TV, newspapers and books) than any other company in a major market

FT has put majority stakes in Orange Sport and Orange Cinéma Séries on the block, and claims to have held discussions with News Corp. We think it unlikely that an investor would be interested in entering the French pay-TV market, dominated by Vivendi’s Canal+

We believe FT could find a buyer for Orange Sport in Disney’s ESPN, which could prove viable if a cross-retailing deal is reached with Canal+. A Eurosport merger is another option. Orange Cinéma Séries could be viable under a new owner, if it widens it distribution to other platforms

Now officially on the way out of the pay-TV production business, a welcome decision in our view, Orange can focus on improving the consumer value of the basic TV offering on the triple play marketplace