SNL Kagan: U.S. Multichannel Sub Loss Tops 1 Million in 2015


MONTEREY: The downward trajectory of the U.S. multichannel segment continued in the fourth quarter of 2015, according to a recent report from SNL Kagan, despite a resurgence in cable subscriptions and solid direct-broadcast satellite (DBS) results.

SNL Kagan estimates the combined cable, DBS and telecommunications (telco) sectors lost more than 1 million video customers in 2015. The 12-month decline was more than four times the 2014 decline, and marked the third consecutive overall annual drop for the industry.

That said, the waning months of 2015 carried signs of stabilization after dramatic losses for the better part of the year. The industry dipped by only 15,000 total customers in the period ended December 31, 2015, essentially matching the losses of fourth quarter 2014.

SNL Kagan has introduced a view of residential-only subscribers to its quarterly reports to better isolate changing patterns of consumption. Year-end 2015 residential subscriptions dropped to 96.7 million. The residential decline was slightly more exaggerated than the total market movement, accounting for a 57,000 subscriber dip in the fourth quarter and reaching 1.1 million for the year.