'India likely to surpass US in terms of DTH subscriber base'

As of June 30 this year, India had 23.5 million DTH subscribers.
"As at June-end, the DTH subscriber base in India stood at 23.5 million, which is equivalent to the size of the markets in other countries. By this year-end, we will leave the US behind, which has got a 32 million subscribers base, making us the largest DTH country," Bharat Business Channel Limited (BBCL) Chief Executive Officer Anil Khera told PTI here.

BBCL is the DTH broadcast arm of the multi-billion dollar Videocon Group.
There are currently seven DTH broadcast service providers in the country with a combined revenue of around USD 2 billion.
The industry will clock an 18 per cent growth this year, Khera said, adding, "Every month, around 8.50 lakh new customers are coming in across the DTH platform."
The industry expects to register around 11-12 million new customers this year, Khera said.

"We are quite hopeful that once the festival season sets in with Onam in August, followed by Ganesh Chaturthi, Durga Puja, Diwali and Christmas, we will definitely see 12 million new customers coming in this year," Khera said.

Last month itself, 9.55 lakh subscribers were added in the market, he said.
At least 15 per cent of this growth is understood to have been on account of the Football World Cup, with fans in Mumbai, Pune and Bangalore, apart from the traditional football bastions of the East, North-East and Kerala, getting new connections, Khera said.
Videocon, which presently has one million DTH subscribers, plans to add 2.5 million connections this year to its network, Khera said, adding, "Around 55-60 per cent of this will come from the rural market."

"The growth will come from across cities and regions. But we are now focusing on 6,000 towns activation," he said.

The company is also eyeing markets such as the North-East and other hilly regions to expand its network, he said, adding, "We are looking at a 21 per cent growth in DTH business this year."

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