Disney+ Reducing CPMs By Up To 15%; Channel 4 Streaming Audience Growing Faster than Netflix and Amazon Prime

On today’s news digest: Disney+ Reducing CPMs By Up To 15%; Channel 4 Streaming Audience Growing Faster than Netflix and Amazon Prime; Microsoft In Breach of EU Antitrust Regulation 

With many advertisers requesting lowered rates for upfront market ad deals with TV networks, Disney+ has reportedly agreed to reduce CPMs by up to 15%. These lower-rate deals are shaking up the scene for competitors, who had not intended to lower their rates to such a degree, but now feel forced to in order to match Disney. With advertisers directing more of their ad spend to streaming (as well as other digital media), there is less pressure to place ad cash months in advance, as is typically the case with upfront bookings for TV ad space. 

Looking at the UK's TV scene, data from Barb reveals that Channel 4 is the only major broadcaster in the country to have grown overall viewing across both streaming and linear in 2024. According to the data, Channel 4’s streaming audience has grown faster than those of Disney+, Netflix and Amazon Prime. During the first half of the year, Channel 4’s streaming audience saw a 32% year-over-year increase in viewer minutes, growing by 7.3 billion minutes so far. Its viewing minutes for streaming and linear combined saw an increase of 2.5% year-over-year. In contrast, other major broadcasters such as BBC, ITV and Sky posted a 3% dip on average. 

In the antitrust arena, the European Commission (EC) has informed Microsoft of its preliminary view that it has breached EU antitrust laws by tying Teams to its productivity applications Office 365 and Microsoft 365. The EC states that through tying these products, Microsoft has likely restricted competition on the market for communication and collaboration products. It expresses concerns that the tech giant may have given Teams a distribution advantage by not giving customers a choice over whether to acquire access to the video meeting application when subscribing to their SaaS productivity applications. The EC also explains: “This advantage may have been further exacerbated by interoperability limitations between Teams' competitors and Microsoft's offerings. The conduct may have prevented Teams' rivals from competing, and in turn innovating, to the detriment of customers in the European Economic Area.”  

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