Free-to-air broadcasters face an increasingly serious existential threat from online video

Ampere Analysis has assessed 15 Multi-Channel Network investment deals between 2012 and 2014. 

Free-to-air broadcast television faces an increasingly serious existential threat from online video, with globalised platforms such as YouTube becoming increasingly competitive to national and pan-regional broadcast channels. The average YouTube user now consumes close to 9 hours of videos on the service per month – nearly 20 minutes per day.

Multi-Channel Networks (MCNs), which aggregate, build and monetise audiences across a variety of OTT video outlets (the most prominent being YouTube), are consequently investment and acquisition targets for major commercial groups vulnerable to the changing TV landscape. Over the past three years, the biggest of these MCNs have been snapped up for sums ranging from £200m up to nearly $1bn, mainly by the larger media groups.

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