Rev growth slows in Canuck pay TV

Sector's operating margin growing

TORONTO — While Canada’s specialty, pay and pay-per-view TV services continue to rake in increasing revenues — last year hitting C$2 billion ($1.6 billion) — the rate of growth is steadily declining, according to a report issued last week.

According to Canada’s broadcast regulator, operating income at 115 Canuck services in 2004 grew 41.4% to $363.4 million. Revenue at the Canuck services climbed 9%, or $136.7 million, to $1.65 billion last year.

Growth rate in the sector is on the decline, however. In 2001 revenue increased 17.3%; in 2002, 14.2%; in 2003, 10.5%.

Both local and national ad revenues are climbing — 16.8% to $555.7 million and 10% to $12.9 million, respectively — but that growth is declining year on year.

The sector’s operating margin has been growing steadily since 2002, however. In 2004 it was 22%.

Cable revenues are climbing more quickly than those of DTH services, up 7.6% to $717.2 million compared with an increase of 2.5% to $344.3 million.

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