Newsletter 17th of May
17 May 2023
These are the main topics this week:
- Mediavision: Household spend on media increases, also in Q1 2023
- Netflix presents casts for Nordic films and reportedly plans to cut spending
- Disney’s Q1 earnings
Mediavision: Household spend on media increases, also in Q1 2023
Today, more than 90 percent of households in Sweden pay for some form of media subscription. Despite rising interest rates, inflation and increased financial strain, there appear to be no signs of saturation in paid media. Quite the opposite, according to Mediavision’s latest analysis there is a new record level for the households’ total media expenditure. Households pay the most for TV and streaming subscriptions.
In the first quarter of 2023, a household in Sweden paid an average of SEK 807 per month for media services. Seen over a year, this means that households spend close to SEK 10,000 on media. The sum includes both subscriptions and individually purchased media. In other words, everything from Netflix subscriptions to audiobooks, Spotify, cinema tickets, gaming and newspapers are included – both paper and digital. Over the past year, Mediavision notes an increase in household media spend of 5 percent. The increasing strain on the household economy does not seem to have affected the willingness to pay.
Viewed across the various types of media, TV and video streaming are by far the biggest categories. This is partly explained by the fact that Swedish households have acquired more services. More than half of the average household’s media budget goes to TV and video streaming, after a growth of 9 percent in the last 12 months. However, payment for audiobooks and podcasts has also grown
Read up on the full press release here, with commentary from Mediavision’s CEO Marie Nilsson.
This analysis covers both the TV- and streaming markets in the Nordic countries. It rests on three pillars: the consumers, the market, and the actors. Analyzing the consumers takes us far – but not all the way. Studying the actors and the market as a whole is just as important.
Netflix presents casts for Nordic films and reportedly plans to cut spending
This Monday, Netflix presented the cast for their upcoming Swedish feature film A part of you. The most notable cast member is the Swedish pop star Zara Larsson, who is making her acting debut in the film. She plays a leading role together with Edvin Ryding and Felicia Maxime, both known from Netflix’s Young Royals. Additional cast includes, among others, Ida Engvoll known from Netflix’s Love & Anarchy and Mustafa Al-Mashhadani known from SVT’s Thin Blue line.
A part of you is written by Michaela Hamilton and directed by Sigge Eklund. The film is produced by Stefan H. Lindén and Alexandra Thönnersten for SF Studios and production is set to begin next week in Stockholm. A Part of You will release globally on Netflix in 2024.
Yesterday, Netflix presented the cast for another Nordic feature film, the Danish comedy drama Ehrengard: The art of seduction. The film features, among others, Sidse Babett Knudsen known from Netflix’s Borgen and Mikkel Boe Følsgaard known from Netflix’s The Chestnut Man.
Ehrengard: The art of seduction was announced by Netflix back in 2021 and will be directed by Academy Award, Golden globe and two-time Palme d’Or winner Bille August. The film is based on the book Ehrengard by Karen Blixen and follows a young, self-appointed expert on love, who gets hired by the Grand Duchess to help her secure a successor. The film takes place in the fairytale kingdom of Babenhausen and will feature set design and costumes by Queen Margrethe II.
Anders August is the scriptwriter and Marcella Dichmann at SF Studios is producing. The film is set to launch globally on Netflix in 2023.
In other news regarding Netflix, the streamer is reportedly cutting costs this year. According to people familiar with the matter, Netflix plans to cut its spending by USD 300 million to improve profitability. The possible reduction of UDS 300 million is however a rather small percentage of the company’s total expenses. During 2022, Netflix’s operating expenses were about USD 26 billion.
One of the reported reasons for the cost cut is the delay of “paid sharing” in the US, the company’s action to crack down password sharing. This is expected to generate new revenue and was initially planned to roll out broadly in Q1. During the company’s Q1 earnings call, Netflix announced that the password sharing crackdown would launch broadly in Q2 instead, including the US. The company said it postponed the release to learn the best approach for their members and its business.
However, “paid sharing” does not seem to be so far away, at least in the UK. Reports yesterday claim that Netflix have been in talks with UK telecos that hold their service, over the looming account-sharing crackdown. Netflix reportedly plans to start contacting UK customers about the new account-sharing rules in the upcoming weeks.
Netflix has not yet commented on the reduce in spending nor the launch of “paid sharing” in the UK.
This analysis maps and analyses all on-demand content available on streaming services in the Nordics and its impact on consumption, actors, and market dynamics. It focuses on the interplay between supply and demand and thus provides a solid foundation for decision-making within content strategy and related areas.
Disney’s Q1 earnings
Last out in the Q1 earnings season for the media sector is Disney. Here are some of the highlights from the report, which was presented last week.
- Disney Plus lost four million subscribers in the first quarter of the year, bringing the total to 157.8 million subscribers, compared to 161.8 million subscribers in the previous quarter.
- The company’s revenue for the quarter rose +13% year-over-year to USD 21.82 billion, which was in line with Wall Street’ estimates.
- During the earnings call, CEO Bob Iger revealed that U.S. customers are getting a new app that combines Disney+ and Hulu content. The new offer will launch at the end of 2023.
Mediavision in the News
Danske og svenske husstande bruger flere penge på medieabonnementer – Mediawatch
Hushållens köp av mediatjänster fortsätter att öka – Di Digital
Så mycket betalar svenskarna för streaming – trots krisen – Sveriges Radio
Mediavision: Streaming growth in Finland, pushed by telcos – Broadband TV News
Aldrig før har danskerne betalt så meget for streaming – Berlingske
Norske husstande har flest streamingabonnementer i Norden – Mediawatch
Research: Swedish spend on media increases – Advanced Television
TV-dagen, 25 May 2023, Stockholm, Sweden**
Copenhagen Future TV Conference, 7 June 2023, Copenhagen, Denmark**
Stockholm Film Festival: 8-19 November 2023, Stockholm, Sweden
* Mediavision will attend
** Mediavision will present