• Wednesday, April 24, 2024
businessday logo


FG unveils pay-per view to compete with satellite TVs

FG unveils pay-per view to compete with satellite TVs

The Federal Government on Thursday unveiled a new satellite pay-per view television meant to serve as an alternative satellite television to the existing ones.

The new TV station is seen as providing alternative platform and opportunities for Nigerians to make choices. This is just as the Nigeria Broadcasting Commission ( NBC) said the organization was working on the possibility of introducing pay- per- view stations in Nigeria.

George Akume, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), while unveiling an indigenous Nigerian Satellite Television, Silver Lake Television (SLTV) at the Shehu Yar’Adua Centre, Abuja, noted that the establishment of the outfit was in line with the desire of Nigerians to “reap from the bountiful harvest awaiting investors in the Nigerian economy.”

Read also:Multichoice, NBCUniversal funds Showmax with $177m

Akume commended the management of Metrodigital Limited, the Station owners, for their patriotic step in setting up the satellite television, saying: “It is becoming very clear that we are on the right path to our collective recovery and prosperity. This is our country; the only one we can truly call our own and we must fix it by ourselves.”

Akume who declared that the “SLTV has responded very loud and clear” to the yearning of Nigerians for alternatives to satellite pay TV, added that “from the information made available to me, they are willing to give their fellow compatriot real value for their money in terms of service quality and affordability.

“In recent times, Nigerians have been yearning for alternatives to Satellite Pay Tv that can serve as an alternative to the existing ones.

“It is gladdening that Metrodigital recognises the fact that the Federal Government has demonstrated an unwavering commitment through robust policies and legal frameworks to promote free competitive and responsible broadcasting service in Nigeria, devoid of any form of monopoly and unfair market practices in the broadcast industry in line with the determination of the administration of His Excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, GCFR to turn the Nigerian economy around.

“Since his ascendancy as the president of Africa’s most populous nation, the President has made enormous policy changes in his quest for economic recovery, one of the results being the reason that we have gathered here today.”

“Nigeria is an opportunity that is impossible to replicate or find elsewhere in any part of the world. The Federal Government wishes to assure the Management of SLTV of her full backing as they continue to do legitimate business in the broadcast industry of Nigeria”, he added.

Speaking with Journalists at the ceremony, Charles Ebuebu, the Director General and Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Broadcasting Commission (NBC), noted that the Commission would consider the call by Nigerian pay satellite television subscribers for the introduction of pay-per-view options.

“But that would mean re-negotiating the contracts already entered into by the content providers. Definitely, pay – per – view is possible and if it’s applicable, it will be considered.

Read also: NBC invests $1.3bn in 10 years to boost operations, trainings

“The issue is this, sometimes those discussions also need to start from when the content is acquired, because usually the traditional method of acquisition of content is that you license per month or annually, based on a 30 days window.

“So, if you’re going to have to do a pay-per-view, you have to go back and negotiate it. Definitely, we do acknowledge in some instances, in other jurisdictions, some of those models come under different names really applicable so we’re also looking into it as a regulator,” he said.

The NBC DG also assured that the Commission would look into the area of overpricing of content even as he affirmed that the general economic situation in the country affects all sectors of the economy.

“There are two sides to that coin; the first part to it is that with the current economic situation of the country, inflation and all of that, it’s not just broadcasting that is affected, all businesses are affected, so when you have prices being reviewed upwards, it’s not located only within the broadcast sector.

” We do acknowledge the fact that in some cases there have been exploitation in certain areas and as the NBC, we’re looking at it, like I said, we’re reviewing our policies and regulations so as to create a viable competitive ecosystem in broadcasting where the consumers will be the ones who’ll have to choose and therefore, market forces determined prices and it’s not exploitative”, he said.

Ifeanyi Okafor, the Managing Director of Metrodigital Limited, lamented that the growth of pay TV in Nigeria had been hampered by policies and legal frameworks that encouraged monopoly.

He said his firm was however, encouraged to invest because the Government had started to take positive steps to addressing the issue.

“The pay TV industry in Nigeria has not actually witnessed a robust and accelerated growth since inception as witnessed in other places. The reason is as a result of the policies and legal frameworks that shape the practice and attitude of the industry participants.

Read also: Court nullifies NBC power to impose fines on broadcast stations

“This allows the dominant players to introduce monopolistic practices that over the years prevented innovation, growth and led to poor quality of service delivery.

“It is however gratifying that in the last few years, the Federal Government of Nigeria took the bull by the horn and