Study: Continued Strong Growth for Cable Operators

September 7, 2007

This article is included in these additional categories:

Broadcast & Cable | Media & Entertainment | Telecom | Television

Despite competitive pressures from telcos and direct broadcast satellite providers, cable’s triple-play (video, data and voice) revenue streams are still expanding due to growing penetration of their subscriber bases, according to SNL Kagan’s “Broadband Cable Financial Databook” study.

Other cable revenue sources – such as commercial services and advertising – will help maintain future growth, SNL Kagan said.

According to the Databook’ forecasts…

  • With advanced services capturing a growing proportion of subscribers and basic subscriber churn slowing thanks to the stickiness of the new services, cable revenue generating units are projected to increase to 200 million in 2012, from 152 million at yearend 2007.
  • Cable multiple system operator revenues are projected to grow to $115.4 billion in 2012 from $79.1 billion in 2007, with the average revenue per subscriber increasing to $140.08.

Among other highlights from the Broadband Cable Financial Databook:

  • Cable RGUs (revenue-generating units) increased to 137.6 million in 2006 from 125.1 million at yearend 2005 and are on track to grow to 151.6 million by yearend 2007.
  • Cable VoIP homes marketed will leap to an estimated 95.5 million by yearend 2007 from 31.0 million at yearend 2005.
  • Cable VoIP subscribers jumped to 6.4 million by yearend 2006 from 2.6 million at yearend 2005 and could reach 12.1 million in 2007.


  • High-speed data penetration of basics was 46% at yearend 2006 versus 39% at yearend 2005 and could grow to 51% by yearend 2007.
  • Digital cable subscribers now surpass 33 million and could surpass 37 million by yearend 2007.


  • In 2007, total residential revenue is expected to grow 9.7% to $75.2 billion, at an average ARPU (average revenue per user [or unit]) of $95.37 versus the $87.48 of 2006. Commercial revenue could increase to $3.9 billion in 2007 from $3.3 billion in 2006.

About the study: Broadband Cable Financial Databook is an annual compendium of the key facts and figures in the cable MSO (multiple system operators) industry, containing 10-year projections and key historical statistics across the cable, pay TV, financing, M&A, cable network and cable TV advertising sectors; it also provides metrics and deal information, profiles of top MSOs and independent owners, and current subscriber counts.

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