Bolivia's pay-TV has reached 40% penetration in the cities of Santa Cruz, Cochabamba and La Paz, compared with 17% in 2005, according to the telecom authority ATT.
The cable and satellite market is clearly on the increase in a country where the pay-TV business was residual not so many years ago. Recently Tigo Millicom announced it had bought Multivisión, which operates in the named cities. It intends to modernise the platform and will offer HD, DVR, pay-per-view and a TV everywhere service. A few days later Entel published its intention to launch direct-to-home (DTH) via the country's new satellite, which will be launched next month.
According to ATT figures, the latest movements in the market are due to a changing market, which is small compared with other Latin American countries, but seems to be offering great opportunities.
Currently, there are 64 companies working in the pay-TV market in Bolivia, with 12 of them covering the whole country. The service offer has barely grown since last year, but the competition and the lower prices has driven an increase in customers.
Most of the platforms are still between the analogue and the digital system, and there are few offering, for example, HD broadcasting. The highest competition is in Santa Cruz, Cochabamba and La Paz, where Cotas Cable TV, Multivisión, ITS, Digital and TuVes, among others, fight for the increasing number of customers.