Saudi Arabia will increase its SVOD revenues by a factor of seven to reach $351m in 2023 to take second place after Turkey.
The MENA region, including Turkey, will have 20.8m SVOD subscribers by 2023, up from 5.22m at the end of last year, according to Digital TV Research, in a report titled: Middle East and North Africa OTT TV & Video Forecasts.
From among the countries covered in the report, Turkey will remain the leader by some distance, with 6.72m subscribers by 2023 or a third of the regions total.
The top eight multinational platforms Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Icflix, Starz Play, Iflix, Wavo, beIN Connect and Shahid Plus will account for three-quarters of the regions SVOD subscribers by end-2023, up from 56% in 2017. Leaving Israel and Turkey out, these eight platforms will retain 91% of SVOD subscribers.
Netflix will remain the dominant service across the region as a whole, with 3.57m subscribers across MENAs Arabic-speaking countries and 7.41m across the region as a whole by 2023, according to Digital TV Research.
Commenting on the dominance of Netflix, Principal Analyst Simon Murray said: Netflix is dominant across the MENA region. This is partly because it operates in more territories than its Arabic competitors it has significant subs bases in Israel and Turkey. However, its success is down to more than geographic reach. The global appeal of its original content has spread throughout the region.”
SVOD revenue from the region is expected to grow sixfold by 2023 to $2.03bn.
Market leader Turkey will add $451m to more than double its total to $603m by 2023. Saudi Arabia will increase its SVOD revenues by a factor of seven to reach $351m in 2023 to take second place.
Cautioning that the market is not sustainable currently, Murray added: “Although overall subscriber numbers will climb impressively, there are just too many Arabic platforms. They do not offer enough original or exclusive content to seriously challenge Netflix. We do not believe that the market can sustain this many Arabic platforms in the long run.”
The report only covered paying SVOD subscribers and not those receiving free platforms as part of their pay TV subscription, he added.