If we are together nothing is impossible. If we are divided all will fail.

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1 Coming out of LET S TALK TV, it s expected that Pick-and-Pay distribution models will become more available across the country. As package choice increases, and more over-the top services enter the market, 1) Can traditional Pay-TV business models continue to thrive? 2) How should broadcasters and BDUs adapt and defend their products and services to Canadian consumers? 3) How do Broadcasters and BDUs keep Pay-TV services relevant for generations of Canadians? (4,000 words maximum) The CRTC has directed licensed BDU s to offer all discretionary services on both a pick-and-pay and a small package basis by December The purpose of this new policy is to provide Canadians with additional choice while fostering a healthy, dynamic TV market. While this change will lead to a more consumer friendly environment providing additional choice, convenience and simplicity, there are fears that this mandated disruption to the current system will be detrimental to the Pay- TV business model. The effective implementation of added consumer choice will depend on many factors all of which are dependent on the ability of BDU s and Broadcasters to partner together to foster growth and revenue opportunities in new areas. If we are together nothing is impossible. If we are divided all will fail. Winston Churchill Partnership does not require the parties to be equals. However, partnership does require that both parties receive benefit. In order to cooperate, both parties must see value. The current system was built on the ability of BDU s and Broadcasters to partner to bring valuable content into the homes of consumers across Canada. This partnership has grown over decades, adjusting along the way with the addition of new products and services, technological advances, new participants and expanded offerings. The Pay TV market has continued to survive and thrive, despite the introduction of alternative entertainment options, both legitimate and illegitimate. Both BDU s and Broadcasters bring significant value to the table. In the simplest form, BDU s are the front line to consumers through their call centers and service supports. They provide and service the pipeline that connects consumers to content. Broadcasters provide the content and

2 obtain the rights to display the content on multiple platforms to ensure that the consumer experience is maximized. Nothing has changed with the introduction of this new regulatory policy. There is still opportunity to thrive, and the value in this partnership between BDU and Broadcaster still stands. However, the methods in which the parties work together must be adjusted to ensure continued success. Providing Value Many have argued that the unbundling of the TV market will result in a loss of value to consumers. They state that on an individual basis channels will be more expensive than when purchased in bulk, and as a result we should not unbundle the TV market as the value of the bundle will be eroded. While it is true that purchasing items individually is more costly than purchasing them as part of a package, the introduction of more choice does not mean a loss of value to consumers. In fact, consumers now have added value within the Pay TV Market. Additional choices are being added to their TV offering. They can choose a value bundle, or they can choose smaller packages or they can select individual products. Consumers have asked for this flexibility, and many have already begun to seek more flexible alternatives outside of the Pay TV Market. Added choice does not mean the old model will disappear. Consumers will not lose access to the value bundle in December 2016, nor will demand for value bundles simply vanish following the introduction of added flexibility. This is not a revolution as much as an evolution. Yet the pace of this consumer shift is accelerating. Digital disruptors are building better product experiences and are bringing these products to market faster. Our success will depend on how quickly we can adjust to this changing environment. Remaining Relevant Consumers have been taking advantage of flexible entertainment options for years. Netflix, You Tube, and OTT offerings are just a sample of the well-entrenched alternatives available to our consumer. Today, you do not need a Pay TV package to be entertained. However, this too is not new. There have always been entertainment options that were competitive to the Pay TV Market.

3 Of concern, however, is the fact that the number of alternative options are growing, and the next generation of Pay TV consumers have grown up in a fast pace, ever changing world where choice is abundant, and often free. The challenge is to find a way to attract the next generation to the Pay TV model, while continuing to meet the needs of existing consumers. Today we jointly serve consumers with a wide variety of needs. Some do not need or want change while others simply want to buy a few services a la carte or have the ability to pick their own packages. We also have an emerging group who are only interested in full on demand, an environment that allows them to choose programs, not channels, and to watch them when and where they want. By meeting the needs of all of these customers, we will continue to provide value. In serving consumers we need to focus on what differentiates the Pay TV offering from its competitors. Some key features are: 1. Quality of Content. With competitive entertainment options growing at a rapid pace, it is critical the content offered to consumers via the Pay TV Market be of a high quality. In the on demand world, repeated content over multiple feeds is no longer a value add. Providing the same content that is also offered for free also limits the value. When competing with so many free options, content will need to be fresh, unique and worthy of the consumers time and financial investment. 2. Price. BDU s and Broadcasters cannot expect consumers to foot the bill of added choice. Consumers have already told us they don t want to pay for services they don t use. While they may be willing to pay more on a per channel basis, they need to see value in the offering to continue in the Pay TV Market. When the competitor is largely free price is critical. 3. Service. Likely one of the most important competitive advantages we have is our connection to the consumer. When consumers have a problem they call the BDU. It may not even be a problem related to the BDU s service offering, such as a consumer experiencing an issue with Netflix, but it creates a valuable opportunity to interact with the customer. These interactions, if managed correctly, can be key to maintaining customer loyalty, influencing customer behaviour and gaining insight into changing consumer needs.

4 4. Choice. The Pay TV Market provides a one stop shop of services that appeal to all members of a household. It offers a vast array of programs on multiple channels, On Demand and Pay per View options and multiple ethnic services. We need to continue to build and enhance our service offering and look for ways to complement our offering with non-traditional services. 5. Navigation. With so much choice, providing a system that can easily navigate options is critical. In an age where virtually everyone has a touch screen enabled smart phone or tablet, bulky set top boxes, clunky remotes and limited EPG s must be updated and replaced in order to ensure the customer experience is as up to date and easy as the competitive experience. Effective search and recommendations engines promote viewership. In addition, assisting in the discoverability of programs will support the introduction of new content and assist Broadcasters in the marketing and promotion of new offerings. Effectively providing the features listed above to consumers will require a joint effort by BDU s and Programmers. Without quality content, BDU s have nothing to sell. BDU s need to package and promote effectively to provide the revenues required to support quality programming. However, BDU s cannot be expected to assume the entire risk. BDU s also need to see margin in order to continue to offer and promote the products to the consumer in a manner that assists the broadcaster. Both parties contribute to the success of the system. Separately, they can only provide part of the value equation. However, working together and understanding the needs of each party allows BDU s and Broadcasters to expand opportunities and create additional value. Protecting Revenues BDU s and Broadcasters have both relied on subscriber volume to build their businesses. BDU s want to increase their ARPU. Broadcasters want to maximize subscriber and advertising revenue. This model has worked to the mutual benefit of both parties for a long time. However, this model no longer fits.

5 The question becomes, who is responsible for the cost of consumer choice? Subscriber numbers are already in decline, and with additional choice it is inevitable that subscriber volume will fall even further. Pushing the cost onto consumers will detract from the value equation and result in further erosion of the subscriber base. This leaves two alternatives: the BDU and the Broadcaster. In a partnership both parties need to see benefit. Therefore the risk must be shared between both parties. Working together to create mutual value in the partnership will generate opportunities to protect revenue and expand. Some of these opportunities are: 1. Protection of Rights. Consumers need to see value in the product they are buying. The value of content can be protected through authenticated subscription. This does not preclude marketing and promotion, but should restrict excessive no charge offerings. Consumers will stop paying for content they can access for free. 2. Obtaining full Rights. Netflix and You Tube viewers are able to watch what they want, when they want and where they want. The Pay TV Model must provide the same consumer experience, and at no additional cost. Multiplatform rights are required to provide the full consumer experience. If a broadcaster or BDU is only providing half of the experience, they are limiting the value of the service offering. 3. Marketing. With added choice comes increased need to ensure the content offered through the Pay TV model is at the forefront of the minds of consumers. This is an area where true partnership can benefit both parties. As the front line to the consumer experience, BDU s can provide great value to Broadcasters in their marketing and promotional efforts. However, it is unlikely that a BDU would provide this support if they are not gaining from the distribution of the content. 4. Tracking Behaviours. Management of customer data and viewing trends will enable targeted advertising and effective content management. These opportunities will sustain the ability to acquire content and enrich the platform. Equally important, by tracking consumers we have the ability to proactively determine those who are at greatest risk of leaving the system and therefore need the most attention. Knowing our high worth customers, and understanding their perceptions of value will support retention activities. In a world where acquisition is costly and difficult, retention strategies are increasingly important.

6 5. Monetizing Viewership. As subscription and traditional ad revenue decline, broadcasters need to find new revenue sources to support the acquisition of quality programming. BDU s can partner in this effort. As on demand viewing increases, tracking viewership on new platforms becomes critical. If working in partnership, BDU s can implement systems that provide data to support viewership numbers which can then be monetized. 6. Further Unbundling. Providing smaller packages and allowing services to be purchased on a pick and pay basis is just the start. Pre-programmed channels are also becoming obsolete in the next generation consumers mind. Consumers look for the program they want to watch, not the channel or service. BDU s and Broadcasters need to acknowledge and adapt to this shift away from pre-programmed channels. 7. Push Back on Cost. As subscribers decline, and revenues follow, there is a need to push back on costs. Moffett Nathanson analyst Michael Nathanson has projected that Disney s ESPN would need to charge a per subscriber fee of $36.30 if sold solely on an a-la-carte basis. This charge is based on an assumption that Disney s ESPN channel should maintain its current margin without any requirement to reduce its costs. We need to push back on this assumption. Our revenue model is changing drastically, and those who create and provide content should be prepared to see a resulting change to their revenue model and associated margins. Conclusion The Pay TV Market is in the midst of a dramatic transition. Revenues will not continue to grow in the traditional manner. Nevertheless, this is an industry that thrives on change. BDU s and Broadcasters have always worked together to create the best possible customer experience. Together, we have always met that challenge and created something even better than what we provided in the past. Once again we will succeed if we work as partners to deliver the best in class programming and service to the Canadian consumer.

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