Netflix Overtakes Germany’s ARD to Become Second Largest TV Group in Europe After Comcast

Giant streamer Netflix was the second largest TV group in Europe by revenue in 2020, according to new data from research firm Ampere Analysis.

Comcast, which owns pay TV operator Sky’s European operations, remains the leader with a 12% market share by revenue. However, with a 6.1% share, Netflix has leapfrogged German public broadcaster ARD. U.K. broadcaster BBC is in fourth place with 4.2% and the Canal Plus Group fifth with 3.2%. Amazon Prime Video is in 13th position with 2%.

Tony Maroulis, principal analyst at Ampere Analysis, notes that since launching in 2012, Netflix has grown rapidly in Europe. By 2016, it had launched its services across the whole of Europe, and passed the $1 billion revenue milestone.

“By 2017, it had the largest customer tally of any subscription TV business in Europe,” said Maroulis. “It would seem that there is no limit to Netflix’s meteoric rise as it helps itself to a greater portion of the audio-visual revenues.”

However, Maroulis also strikes a note of concern for local broadcasters. “While Netflix has enjoyed success across the continent, local broadcasters are facing increased pressures. The coronavirus pandemic has thrown the TV advertising market into decline, compounding and accelerating the woes of traditional and established brands. And while Netflix’s pockets are getting deeper, local entities are struggling to compete.”

“Over the next few years, Netflix alone is set to be better funded than many leading commercial broadcasters, and its scale means that it is able to produce quantities of high-quality content that most of its local competitors cannot match,” adds Maroulis. “This global versus local imbalance will further accelerate the online viewing shift, which is now beginning to shift to older demographics as well as young.”

In its analysis of TV revenue, Ampere included broadcast advertising income, subscription video-on-demand revenue, public funding and subscription pay television revenue.

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