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US companies dominate entertainment for kids.

US companies dominate TV and video entertainment for kids in Europe

US companies dominate TV and video entertainment for kids in Europe. Around half of all children’s TV channels in Europe are US-owned (48%) and the same goes for  59% of entertainment subscription video-on-demand services, a new survey from European Audiovisual Observatory, par of the Council of Europe, shows.

Most non-European parent companies of AV services in Europe are US players. Around one in five (18%) of all TV channels (excluding local TV) are US-owned and over one third of all SVOD (39%) and TVOD (33%) services in Europe belong to a US company..

“The European audiovisual media services sector has been shaped by the development of its unique national media ecosystems. This diversity is reflected in a sector boasting a total of 12 664 audiovisual media services which are available in wider Europe, the observatory says. 

Around three quarters of these are TV channels and one quarter are on demand video services. 

The content of AV services in Europe reveals significant differences between TV (linea)r and video services (non-linear). While TV programming is largely defined by thematic fragmentation, on-demand services have a clear focus on film and TV fiction content, the report says.

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With regards to ownership, the European TV market is divided into a public sector with mainly generalist programming available on networks and a private sector which has expanded into thematic cable, IPTV, and satellite channels. 

Almost all on-demand services are privately owned (97%). Public service media have entered the market as well, mostly offering catch-up of their linear programming. One in five public on-demand services are paying services, for example the international version of the BBC iPlayer.

Non-European players have taken a strong foothold in the European AV market, the report notes. One in five of the top 50 TV groups and more than a third of the top 50 groups for on-demand services has a non-European parent company.

US players lead in the field of kids TV and video entertainment. Around half of all  children’s TV channels in Europe are US-owned (48%). Paramount’s Nickelodeon brand, Disney’s Disney Channel, AT&T’s Cartoon Network and AMC Networks JimJam are prominent examples. 

US players also dominate adult online entertainment with a 59% supply share of entertainment subscription video-on-demand services.

“US players have by far the largest scope of operating markets across Europe. The Walt Disney Company, for example, has a virtual European omnipresence, operating in 44 European TV markets”, the report says.

“With regards to their establishment hubs, pan-European players employ different strategies. Netflix, for example, uses a centralized strategy with one main country of establishment from where it targets the European markets.” 

“A multi-country strategy is used by Vivendi, where typically a small number of countries serve as a basis to target various national markets.” 

“AT&T, by contrast, applies a decentralized strategy where a larger number of establishment hubs serve the European markets.”

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