The first panel session at the Nigeria International Television (NITV) Summit focused on the challenges and opportunities facing the country’s pay TV industry.
Addressing the issue of sustainability and growth in the pay TV business in Nigeria, panelists discussed the challenges and ways in which these can be overcome.
Panelists included Funmi Adenaike, general manager of Play TV; Emeka Mba, former NBC director general and now CEO of Questechmedia Consulting; Bamidele Adetunji, CEO at Montage Media Group; and Zachary Wazara, CEO of Kwese TV. The session was moderated by Lindsey Oliver, CEO of Yanga TV.
The conversation kicked off with an evaluation of the industry as a whole and how it has evolved so far. Panelists agreed that rapid development of technology poses a challenge for pay TV platforms.
“The internet is changing consumer behaviour and business models,” said Wazara.
Meanwhile, despite agreeing that other industries are threatening the growth of the TV industry, Adetunji stated that the challenge to sustainability is a lack of proper recording technology and archiving.
“There was time I wanted to produce an epic Nigerian movie but was told it was unavailable because a recording had been done over the master recording, which basically means it no longer exists.
“And this leads me to ask, who has the rights to TV series like [classic Nigerian drama] Village Headmaster? Where are our formats? Where are our records? There are no local formats, yet international formats still exist,” said Adetunji.
Addressing the issue of telcos encroaching on the TV industry, Mba stated: “There are no level playing fields in an industry that is hugely dependent on technology and data to operate.”
Buttressing his point, Adenaike added: “There are enormous challenges in the industry and some pay TV companies are forced to deliver certain kinds of content because they are working with what is available, which is not much.”
Speaking about the way forward, Adetunji suggested that Nigeria should establish a commercial satellite platform so local pay TV channels don’t have to form partnerships with international satellites and pay “astronomical” amounts to air content. This is especially true when consumers do not understand a pay TV channel’s need for high prices because all they want is content at a low cost.
tagged in: Bamidele Adetunji, Emeka Mba, Funmi Adenaike, Kwesè TV, Lindsey Oliver, Montage Media Group, NBC, Nigeria International Television Summit, NITV, Play TV, Questechmedia Consulting, Yanga TV, Zachary Wazara