Video: Connecting the dots – AVOD, Disney vs. Netflix, M&A predictions, Streaming wars

If there’s anything we can say following the Discovery Warner announcement, it’s that the streaming market isn’t quietening down. Understanding what’s at play behind the headlines is key to making sense of this increasingly complicated marketplace. To help do exactly that, Allan McLennan from PADEM Media Group speaks to Andreas Waltenspeil about super aggregators, Disney Vs Netflix tricks for success in the market. Strategies that don’t work are single-threaded, explains Allan. Today’s companies don’t do just broadcast or just IP, they’re bringing satellite, broadcast, streaming and other avenues into one to maximise reach. They’re also looking to their partners to help them understand their audience with analytics, improved workflows and creating a best-of-breed service.

PADEM Media Group, which focuses on market execution and acceleration, see the trends in Europe lagging slightly the US and suggests that the growth in AVoD seen in the US will continue to manifest in Europe. Advertising-based VoD (AVOD) is very compelling for many viewers because it’s easy, accessible and free to watch. Subscription-based VoD (SVOD), on the other hand, is prized by certain viewers who don’t want to see adverts. While this balance is strongly in favour of SVOD services at the moment, Allan sees that AVoD will continue to grow its market share allowing providers to reach people who don’t have the means for another subscription.



Andreas asks about market fragmentation which is ‘part of the game’ according to Allan. This is why there is a continued role for super aggregators whose role is to bring into one place as much content as possible. There are different aggregators in the market. Disney, Allan argues, is one example as they feature Hulu, ESPN and Disney+ under one umbrella delivering content for the whole family. This is naturally a self-limiting form of aggregation which only includes Disney-owned properties. Another more expansive offering are device manufacturers like Roku whos device can access many different services. Though no-one as told Google, this is a win for consumers and streaming providers. Allan sees Roku in a strong position with 35, going on 40, million users so considers the chances of them being acquired in the next couple of years quite high.

The video finishes talking about streaming wars. There will always be a fight for dominance so they will never end, but the question is how they will pan out. Certainly, there’s a fight for size, the Discovery Warner merger is partly about this. But there’s always to the ‘road to niche’. Major services like Crunchyroll started with a niche offering, though we see that the larger niches such as Anime are big enough to scale well worldwide. More specific niches may have much smaller bases but can provide a great, profitable business. Allan’s interested to see how the Broadcasters continue to engage against the ‘Streamers’ such as Netflix and Amazon. Netflix has moved into original programming, in essence like the broadcasters and Amazon has started making its name by winning major sports rights, not unlike how BT Sports first entered the UK market against Sky. We’ve seen recently that European public broadcasters are capitalising on their local content to continue to forge a relationship with their user base. This represents a response to the global, English-language American-dominated, market which fights without using total size as the weapon.

Watch now!

Allan McLennan Allan McLennan
Chief Executive,
PADEM Media Group
Andy Waltenspiel Andreas Waltenspiel
General Manager,
Waltenspiel Management Consulting

Video: Super-Aggregation & Cloud-Powered IPTV – A Case Study

What is super aggregation and why is it necessary for the media & entertainment industry? Surveys show that 47% of US citizens are frustrated by having to subscribe to multiple services rather than just 1 as they used to. Moreover, 57% are annoyed when content they like moves to another platform. This indicates there’s an opportunity in the market for services which aggregate multiple services into one to meet the needs of consumers and expand the reach of streaming providers.

This webinar from IBC 365 is hosted by Andy Waltenspiel who talks to TiVo, Liberty Latin America and Velocix about how they’ve worked together to launch a super-aggregation service for Latin American countries. Chris Thun from TiVo explains that he feels that ‘universal search’ is essential as well as ‘universal browse’ which creates a recommendation engine which understands you and helps you discover content from all services.

Liberty’s Edwin Elberg explains that this project came about when Liberty Latin America split from Liberty Global. Unusually, this meant they had to learn how to ‘scale down’ their operations. But this gave them an opportunity to differentiate themselves through a super-aggregation project which relied on the strengths of TiVo and Velocix with TiVo handling the customer-facing elements and Velocix managing the technical integration of the project and technical delivery of a number of workflow features such as ingest, recording and delivery to any device.

Jim Brickmeier from Velocix explained that their choice to use the cloud was made from the point of view of flexibility and reactiveness being most important. Whilst telcos which have their own network may still want to use on-prem solutions since delivering to their network is so much cheaper that way plus they can use many of the same technologies that would be in the cloud on-prem.

From a business perspective, having a super-aggregator is a benefit for many of the streaming services because Liberty is a big, trusted name with many subscribers. They already have a commercial and brand relationship with millions of people which significantly reduces the friction in signing up to new content, particularly in a part of the world where credit card ownership is far from universal.

Overall, this service seeks to differentiate itself and maintain subscribers by being the only company in the market with a user-experience at that level and with great content. Edwin Elberg points out it’s far from easy in setting up multiple relationships for the service and involves many contracts and careful planning to deal with international sales tax rules. Onboarding a new partner, he suggests, should be quicker and he thinks a standard for both the content provider and the aggregator to follow or conform to is the future.

Watch now!

Chris Thun Chris Thun
Vice President, Product
Edwin Elberg Edwin Elberg
Sr. Director, Product Development
Liberty Latin America
Jim Brickmeier Jim Brickmeier
Chief Product and Marketing Officer,
Andy Waltenspiel Andy Waltenspiel
General Manager
Waltenspiel Management Consulting