Exclusivity, Fluctuation In Forex Affecting Paytv Market –ACTV Boss | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Exclusivity, Fluctuation In Forex Affecting Paytv Market –ACTV Boss

Posted: Jul 11, 2015 at 1:15 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Paytv market, no doubt, has witnessed tremendous growth in the last few years particularly with the attendant influx of many players. In an encounter with Olamide Bakare, the Chief Executive Officer of ACTV, Mr Godfrey Orkeh speaks on the challenges and its capacity as a company to deliver a good customer experience to subscribers on the platform. Excerpts:

What does it take in producing or buying content?

There are two types of content we buy in this industry. You either buy the raw content or the linear content. In the case of linear content, it is like a channel that has been put together and who’s scheduled had already been determined. Simply put, linear channel is a readymade content.

Mr Godfrey Orkeh

Mr Godfrey Orkeh

With respect to buying content, it varies depending on the category and class of the content. Some are more expensive because of their clout. Pricing is for a season and not eternally. As far as the pricing is concerned, there is no fixed price to content sale. It depends on the desperation of the owner and the buyer.

We were supposed to migrate from analogue to digital last month, in your view, what do you think hindered us from achieving  that target?

In terms of digitization process, the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) is championing and coordinating the implementation of that programme. As we speak, the programme is underway. Of course, I am aware there was initial plan to switch over in June which didn’t materialise. But despite that, there have been some achievements in the area of pilot run which was successfully done in Jos by setting up of the infrastructure for the delivery of the B2B signal.
For us, we are ready to make our contributions in terms of digital migration. We will also play a role in being a provider of content. I would say it is a timing issue because there are several things that need to be done.  Even though it is not our mandate to speak on this issue, it is important to state that we are ready for the migration. As NBC is making progress, they are updating us with the milestones.

Once switch-over is done, we will be available with our content. With your digital set-up boxes, you can still receive us.

One thing is to have a satellite television, another thing is to deliver quality services based on the growing number of subscribers on the platform.

Do you have enough capacity to cater for the challenges that may come along the way as subscriber base increases?

Yes, I think we have the capacity since technology does not require physical presence everywhere. We only need one physical presence to be able to deliver service everywhere. We can go as far as West Africa based on the satellite that we are running . However, what we have done to provide support and accessibility to our services in Nigeria is to partner with agencies and dealers. Take for example, we have three level of relationship and they include partners, dealers and installers.

We adopt a retail model whereby you don’t need to have a shop in Osogbo to operate in Osogbo. That is why we say we have the capacity technically to run 24/7.

Basically, we are covering every region through our services.

What are challenges confronting your business as an industry  and give us an update on the issue of legislation?

The number one challenge in this industry is that there are no regulation. Although NBC is doing its best but there is no Act backing them up to penalise any offenders. Even in the trade industry, before the last administration took over, there was a bill on Anti –competition but nothing was heard on it. As you have in Europe, nobody can claim 100% of the market because if you go beyond a particular benchmark, they will be fined. So, it is not in their interest  to grow beyond the level. Often times, when they grow beyond that point, they stall their growth to create room for other players.

Now, there is no such law right now in Nigeria and by so doing it is a big barrier. It is only legislation that can change that. On our own part, we are raising voices on the challenges in the industry but we believe the only way to fight challenges is through innovation. So, you cannot arrest someone on the ground that is not defined in the constitution because there is no law that limits exclusivity right now.

Until that law is passed, we have to keep going round it. We believe we can overcome the challenges through innovation
Beside, another challenges affecting the industry is forex. 80% of what we buy are international content. The likes of BBC, Aljazeera are acquired in dollar rate which means that by now, the price for one content bought few months ago would have sky rocketed due to high exchange rate of naira to dollar.