Monday, August 15, 2005

Trillion Dollar Baby: VSS Forecast Sees Communications Industry Topping Thirteen Figures by 2009

The annual communications industry forecast announced today by media investors Veronis Suhler Stevenson sees healthy growth across the board over the next few years for publishers, media outlets and related services providers, adding up to a total industry forecast of $1 trillion revenues by 2009, fueled by an average ten hours a day of content consumption and an average $1,000 annual per capita expenditure. By VSS's reckoning this would make content the fourth largest and fastest growing sector of the U.S. economy in the '04-'09 period. While the overall forecast of 6.8 growth for 2005 is down somewhat from 2004's 7.3 percent growth rate, institutional end-user spending on content is up to a healthy 7.2 percent growth rate ($187 billion total market), eclipsing growth in consumer spending for the first time since 2001. Wherefore all of those "flat" institutional content budgets? If we look past traditional subscription patterns, spending is certainly healthy on value-add services for end users that enhance the value of content, helping to drive this growth. Also of interest is a predicted slip in time spent with ad-driven content, predicted to be down to 54.9 percent by 2009 from today's 56.8 percent. Where are they ad eyeballs and ears going? To subscription and interactive content, with outlets such as wireless content services dulling the ad roar for user-focused aggregation services.

VSS has tweaked its model somewhat this year to provide a more robust picture of the industry that looks more towards where it's heading than where it's been in the past twenty years. The results are more interesting and, hopefully, more usable for content executives trying to build out business plans in this changing environment.
Post a Comment