Newsletter 15th of February
15 February 2023
The main topics this week:
- Mediavision: The future for paid podcasts – standalone or bundled with other media?
- The Q4 earnings season continues
- Storytel’s new landing page indicates international expansion
Mediavision: The future for paid podcasts – standalone or bundled with other media?
In 2022, the number of households paying for podcasts has grown strongly. But close to all paying households also pay for another audio service. This is concluded in Mediavision’s latest analysis of the Swedish audio market.
The market for paid podcasts shows strong growth in Q4 2022, as the number of paying households increased by a whopping 85 percent compared to the same period 2021. But pretty much all households that pay for podcasts (97 percent) also pay for audiobook and/or music services. This means that the paid market for podcasts basically add no households to the total paid audio market (i.e. music, audiobook and podcasts).
Read up on the full press release here, with commentary from Mediavision’s senior analyst Fredrik Liljeqvist.
This analysis provides in-depth understanding of the entire audio market – including audiobooks, music, podcasts, and radio. The analysis focuses on the digital transformation of both listening and consumer payments, on both aggregated and actor specific levels.
The Q4 earnings season continues
The earnings season is still going strong. Here’s a quick recap of what’s been reported this past week.
- Revenues for Disney grew 8% from 21.81 billion in Q4 2021 to USD 23.51 billion in Q4 2022.
- Disney+ had a total of 161.8 million global subscribers in Q4 2022, a decrease of 2.4 million subs from 164.2 million in the previous quarter. This is the streaming service’s first subscriber loss since launching in 2019.
- As part of Disney’s effort to make its streaming business profitable, CEO Bob Iger revealed during the earnings call that the company is planning a significant restructuring, including job cuts affecting 7,000 employees.
- Shares of Disney were up 5% after the bell.
- The Finnish media company’s net sales grew to EUR 260 million, compared to 252 million in Q4 2021.
- Sanoma reported growth in paying subscriber base of SVOD service Ruutu+ in 2022, but any exact number of subscriber growth were not given.
- The company expects a mild recession in Finland, leading to expected decline in ad market and modest net sales for 2023.
- Norwegian media company Schibsted’s EBITDA were NOK 651m in Q4 2022, up 3% year-over-year.
- The group’s news media were flat underlying revenues year-over-year in Q4 2022, due to challenging advertising market, particularly in Sweden.
- Continued growth for Schibsted in digital subscription revenues, up 18% year-over-year in Q4 2022, supported by PodMe.
- Paying subscribers of Viaplay grew 83% year-over-year from 4 million in Q4 2021 to 7,3 million in Q4 2022, thanks to the company’s great expansion. Viaplay launched their direct-to-consumer streaming service in the UK during Q4 and will launch in Canada and the US during Q1 2023.
- 24% organic sales growth with reported sales of SEK 4,670 million, compared to SEK 3,553 million in Q4 2021.
- Total reported operating income was SEK -294 million, which according to CEO Anders Jensen “reflecting weaker advertising markets, higher sports rights costs yet to be offset by higher prices, and the temporary discontinuation of a distribution agreement in Sweden”.
This analysis tracks the progress of individual and household payments per service and actor, as well as overall media expenditures. The primary focus is mapping out the allocation of expenditures across audio, video, text, and access. Published biannually.
Storytel’s new landing page indicates international expansion
Swedish audiobook service Storytel has launched a new international landing page. The offer presented on the new page is unlimited listening and reading of more than one million audio- and e-books for the price of EUR 9.99 per month. The new landing page indicates a major international expansion, as customers in several different countries are being directed to the new page.
The new Storytel landing page covers several African countries such as Gambia, Senegal, Liberia and Sierra Leone. A few European countries have also been added, such as Slovakia, Malta and Czech Republic. If you are entering the Storytel website from countries where the new page has not launched yet, you are directed to a page listing the 26 countries where Storytel is already is present.
In the past, Storytel has (with a few exceptions) launched in one new country at a time. But with the new landing page, it’s easy to interpret that a bigger expansion may be in the pipeline. Tomorrow, Storytel releases its full year report for 2022 and perhaps we will get more information regarding the potential expansion then.
Mediavision in the News
Stark tillväxt för betalda podcast – Dagens Media
Sweden: Significant growth in podcast households – Advanced Television
TVOD in Sweden reaches record levels in 2022 – Broadband TV News
Online køb og leje af film nåede nye højder i Sverige i 2022 – Mediawatch
Netflix drag – så ska kontodelare jagas – Svenska Dagbladet
Stort tapp för nya poddar i världen – “Kärvare läge” – Sveriges Radio
Netflix tros redovisa 4,5 miljoner nya prenumeranter – Omni
Nordics: 3 million SVOD accounts are borrowed from other households – Piracy Monitor
Media Summit: 15 March 2023, Stockholm, Sweden **
Radiodays Europe: 26-28 March 2023, Prauge, Czech Republic
MIPTV: 17-19 April 2023, Cannes, France
* Mediavision will attend
** Mediavision will present