Building of a digital business
Comcast (CMCSA) has tapped talent from its Sky subsidiary in the United Kingdom to join its team in the United States working on its online video service expected to launch next year. According to a report by Philly.com, two Sky executives relocated to the United States to work on Comcast’s video service. The move shows the length that Comcast is willing to go for the sake of developing its digital media business amid the shrinking traditional pay-TV market.
Comcast lost 121,000 pay-TV customers in the first quarter. AT&T (T), Dish Network (DISH), and Charter Communications (CHTR) lost 627,000, 259,000, and 145,000 pay-TV subscribers in the first quarter, respectively. America’s traditional pay-TV market is forecast to continue shrinking as eMarketer projects that the number of people that have gotten rid of a pay-TV subscription in the country will rise to over 50 million by 2021, from 33 million in 2018.
Comcast gives Sky product chief from America
But Comcast is not just taking talents from Sky to come help its efforts to counter cord-cutting in the United States. The company is also sending some talents to Sky. The report cited above also stated that Comcast executive Fraser Stirling, who has been part of the team working on the company’s X1 platform, is relocating to the UK to take up a new role as Sky’s chief product officer.
Comcast purchased Sky for about $40 billion last year following a fierce bidding war that pitted it against the combined force of Fox (FOXA) and Walt Disney (DIS). Sky contributed $4.8 billion to Comcast’s top line in the first quarter.