Spain vid market hurting

MADRID — Spain’s video software market hit a small trough in 1996, hit by the decline of newspaper kiosk sell-through and video press-promotions, Southern European phenomena which moved huge moneys in Spain in the early ’90s.

According to figures published Thursday at Spain’s eighth Video Market Conference, sponsored by Rank Video Services, turnover for video sell-through at newspaper kiosks fell from $118.3 million in 1995 to $104.0 million last year. “Cheap video kiosk sales were favored by the early ’90s recession. Now Spaniards can think of buying a house or a car,” Virgilio Ortega, director of kiosk distributor Planeta de-Agostini, explained at the conference.

Sales of videos in press promotions crashed from $85.8 million in 1995 to $53.8 million a year later. “Good promotional video product is running out. Now we’re using more CDs or toys,” one video press promoter told Daily Variety.

Adding these figures to stats for traditional videostore rentals and sell-through published by the Spanish Video Union, total retail turnover for Spain’s video market fell from $520.6 million in 1995 to $458.6 million in 1996, video sell-through being battered by price-cutting.

Spanish video faces a tough 1997: Spain’s digital TV platform, CanalSatelite Digital (CSD), recently launched the country’s first pay-per-view services and videostores now face newly introduced rental rights levy on their sales.

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