Online video P&L watch

6 12 2007

beyondnessofthings will update this post as figures emerge. Meanwhile some companion reading at Silicon Valley Insider:

Economics of Online Video 1: One Tough Business

Economics of Online Video 2: Unit Cost Structure

Estimating Financial Impact of iTunes/NBC: Small, For Now, But We Still Expect Reconciliation

NBC Universal / iTunes: NBCU may have pulled its shows off iTunes, but last year’s profits, representing 40% of all TV content on iTunes, were US $15 million [source: Multichannel News, 3 Dec 07]

Walt Disney: The Mouse expects to generate around US $25 million in revenues from digital downloads in the fiscal year to Sep 2007 [source: CNN Money , 7 Feb 07]

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Apple to halve cost of iTunes TV downloads; supplier rebellion brewing?

7 09 2007

Apple is planning to cut the cost of TV downloads via its iTunes service from US $1.99 to just 99 cents, reports Variety.

The move would create a single price point for both audio and TV downloads, which Apple believes will drive consumption for the latter category, which remains completely dwarfed by equivalent music track downloads. Given Apple’s success in dominating the digital downloads sector, any changes to pricing could prove an adrenalin shot to sales of TV downloads.

It’s reported that pricing for movie downloads will likely remain unchanged and there hasn’t been any comment on price points for the recently-launched TV downloads offer via the iTunes U.K storefront, where shows sell for double the existing equivalent price across the Pond.

Reuters builds on Variety‘s coverage, suggesting that other TV networks may be emboldened by NBCU’s move, with a Gartner analyst even speculating that video content may all but disappear from the iTunes service.

News Corp., Time Warner, Viacom and Walt Disney Co. all have contracts with iTunes. One of them is due to expire by the end of this year, and another by next year, according to industry sources, the report adds.

In related news, Apple and partner record labels are to go before the European Commission on 19 and 20 September, to defend accusations of price-fixing across the Eurozone.





Disney bags kids social network

2 08 2007

club_penguin.pngThe Walt Disney Company has paid US $350 million, potentially rising by the same amount again based on performance over the next two years, for pre-teens social network Club Penguin.

Launched in late 2005, the service provides an ad-free, snow-covered virtual world for six to 14-year-olds to interact with eachother. Following the takeover, Club Penguin will be re-named Disney Club Penguin and be used to cross-promote other Disney properties.

Last reported figures state 700,000 subscribers (each paying $5.95 / month) and 12 million active users, mainly based in North America; though post-acquisition Disney has big plans for expanding the property in Asia and Japan. Competitors include Webkinz, Stardoll, Gaia, Habbo Hotel and Viacom-owned Neopets.