After the glamorous “Night of A Thousand Stars”, the next morning kicked off with a breakfast and then a press conference. The informative press conference allowed for an interactive platform for media to engage with key management  at MultiChoice Africa. This is what you need to know about MCA from the key press briefing:image

1.     Economic issues and the impact of costs on consumers

It is not news that some African economies are not performing well. For us Zimbabweans,  we know this story oh too well. With currencies around the continent devaluing , consumers have less to spend and value for their money . MCA is taking into account these financial limitations that consumers are facing. Tim Jacobs, MCA CEO shared that , MultiChoice is  always looking into evaluating their prices and bouquets to ensure audiences have alternative options which are cost friendly too.  MORE VALUE FOR YOUR BUCK!!

2.      The issue of the EPL and premier bouquet

While I’m not much of a soccer fan, nothing has received more attention than MCA’s EPL offering and only being available to view the EPL on the Premiere bouquet. Locally, consumers are not always aware of the cost of EPL rights and the increasing costs so naturally consumers start making noise when costs for the premier bouquet also start rising. So for all you gunner and reds fans this is what you need to know . The EPL rights went up by 70% and MCA had to make tough decisions too. They had to find a way to pass on the cost of that 70 % increase to consumers. As Tim added, “We didn’t like to but we had to-it was a business decision!”

3. Repeats, repeats and the Ecosystem

Consumers favourite question is that of repeats, with some subscribers adding that they feel there are a little too many repeats.. hehe think  I watched Siba’s Table  season 1 a  few  too many times. .. but hey this is what , David Booth , Chief Content Officer had to say, “Internationally, repeats are a part of the ecosystem  of multichannel television. It is about giving audiences another opportunity to see programming.  the chances of coming to something first time round is getting smaller by the day because of the increasingly-fragmented viewing environment. If, for example, you miss one or two episodes of a show with a strong narrative arc, it’s difficult to get into it. We’re seeing repeats and archive programming having more life. Having exclusively live content available costs billions and no broadcaster in the world has that kind of offering. The challenge for us is balancing fresh hours of content and archive programming, which is a fine balancing act. The key is that a repeat is not a repeat if you haven’t seen it!

4. The Threat of the internet and Piracy

Having produced an online show myself , the world is shifting how we consume media especially with the internet. The likes of Netflix, YouTube and Facebook amongst others have impacted audiences. Piracy to is also a current threat to broadcasters. MCA has welcomed competition with the aims to remain relevant and offer a competitive product that audiences still buy into as well as ensuring that their content is not misused and pirated

5. Expect more localised content and Pop Up Channels

With the launch of new channels such as Maisha Magic and Zambezi Magic illustrating the commitment that MultiChoice has to key regional blocs and audiences. MultiChoice Africa is now offering more localised content across the continent to cater to the diverse audiences.  The vision of the organisation is to  have a channel that caters for every specialist niche market or language group across the continent. The decision to service markets in their local language hinges on the commercial reality of when they get enough subscribers to warrant it. They have a deep interest in understanding how to make content resonate with local audiences. Audiences  can also expect more pop up events and localised channels especially over the holiday season.