TopTV: Changing the Face of the South African Pay-TV Landscape?
Dr Thabo Mosala & Stephanie Townsend
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Wits Business School, University of the Witwatersrand
In May 2011, Vino Govender, CEO of the Johannesburg-based On Digital Media’s (ODM) TopTV, felt pleased about the 200 000 subscribers that had been secured in less than one year in the competitive South African satellite pay television (pay-TV) market. When TopTV commenced services on 1 May 2010, MultiChoice’s DStv had been the dominant player for 15 years. TopTV made a calculated decision to target clients who had not been able to afford pay-TV. This included 60% of South Africans who wanted wholesome, family entertainment but were not particularly interested in sport, which was a major part of DStv’s offering. TopTV had since extended its target market to include the LSM 6–9 income bracket. Nonetheless, Govender wondered whether this repositioning was sustainable enough to compete successfully in the long run. What strategy, he wondered, should he follow to attract and keep a larger target audience to ensure future growth?