Through three days of keynotes, conversations, debates and networking at the CASBAA Convention 2016 at Studio City in Macau the worlds of the Operator, Content Creator, OTT Provider, Advertiser, Data Diver and Regulator came together. The CASBAA Convention annual conference got underway at its exciting new venue, Studio City, Macau. This year marks the 25th anniversary of CASBAA which is dedicated to representing key players from the cable and satellite broadcasting industry under the motto ‘represent, inform, connect’.
On the inaugural day following the opening remarks by Sompan Charumilinda, Chairman for CASBAA, Irwin Gotlieb, the Global Chairman for GroupM, was first to take to that stage to discuss the changing nature, and measurement of viewing behaviors. He also touched upon how the way to reach audiences via the marketing funnel is the same but a granularity of data can now inform decisions for each stage of the funnel. He underscored how media will continue to play a role becoming more targetable, addressable and eventually part of the transaction process.
Oliver Wilkinson, managing director for PricewaterhouseCoopers, provided statistics to illustrate that pay-TV is not dead, despite what the headlines say, and that it remains a primary form of entertainment. Yet, with digital players increasingly on their turf, content and channel providers should look to diverse and digitalize their offer. Vivek Couto, Executive Director at Media Partners Asia, flagged the rise of digital players with the forecast that pay-TV growth would slow to about 3% as content providers looking to establish more direct to consumer offerings.
Piracy cropped up in conversation throughout the day with opinions polarized on whether this would continue to be an issue. In a session devoted to the subject, Avigail Gutman, Programme Director, Operational Security, CISCO, advised that the industry needed to ‘follow the money’ in combating piracy.
Different models of OTT content streaming were also a hot topic. Jakatdar illustrated how Vuclip’s Viu platform was a direct to consumer offering while David Weiland, EVP Asia, BBC Worldwide discussed how the ‘Beeb’ had instead opted to stream their new OTT app via their operator, Starhub. With all the different streaming options available, it was concluded that consumers could hardly keep up and would want a ‘one-stop’ shop when seeking out their viewing content.
The challenges facing operators were raised in two panels featuring operators including Jeremy Kung, CEO of TMNet Malaysia, Jeon Yong-Ju, CEO of D’Live Korea and Ralph Siebenaler, Digicel in one, and Meena Adnani, Content & Marketing Director, First Media (Indonesia) and Jagdish Kumar, MD & Chief Executive, Hathway Cable (India) in the other. These included figuring out what consumers wanted and providing accessibility, the need for more viewership statistics and working with operators in the OTT landscape. Once the basics in terms of stability and speed had been covered, the next step would be to offer value-added services while building a strong relationship with the customer.