The DStv myth

DStv is often seen as a luxury which can be cut when times are tough, but its strong sports offering in a sport-loving nation means it is seen as a necessity by many subscribers.

Sports fans want to watch their favourite team play live, and DStv is currently the only service in South Africa which offers this for most sporting events.

If a sports fan does not have DStv at home, they may well need to visit a restaurant or pub to watch their team play.

This comes with additional costs in the form of expensive food and drinks which can ultimately amount to more than a monthly DStv subscription.

While it is easy for people who are looking for movies, TV series, and documentaries to cut the cord, it is far more difficult for sports lovers to do the same.

Sport keeps DStv Premium subscribers hooked

While Netflix, ShowMax, and other streaming services offer an affordable alternative to DStv, the pay-TV service continues to grow.

The biggest reason for this growth is sport. SuperSport offers DStv subscribers excellent live coverage of the most prominent sporting events.

To sports fans, DStv is not seen as a luxury which can be cancelled during hard times, but rather as a necessity to watch their favourite team play live.

Supersport has exclusive broadcasting rights for many popular sporting events, including Super Rugby, the Premier League, and the UEFA Champions League.

If you want to watch all these matches live from your home, you only have one legal choice – subscribe to DStv.

This makes DStv, and DStv Premium specifically, a necessary monthly expensive for sport-loving South Africans.

So popular is the SuperSport offering that MultiChoice has the freedom to increase DStv prices year after year.

2020 is no exception, and from April most DStv clients will start to pay more for their monthly subscription.

DStv subscriber growth

MultiChoice’s latest financial results showed that the total number of DStv subscribers in South Africa increased from 7.6 million to 8.2 million over the last year.

There is, however, some bad news for the pay-TV provider. MultiChoice lost 3% of its DStv Premium subscribers over the last year.

The average revenue per user also declined from R308 to R292 due to the higher percentage of DStv subscribers choosing cheaper packages.

DStv Premium now accounts for 19% of all DStv subscribers, down from 21% over the same period last year.

This shows that while sport keeps many DStv Premium subscribers on board, others are migrating to Netflix or cheaper DStv packages to save money.

Now read: DStv price increases for 2020

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The DStv myth