(Warsaw, 28 June 2016) Mike Fries, President and CEO of Liberty Global, and Josh Sapan, President and CEO of AMC Networks set out the future of the cable industry as a multi-platform provider, embracing relevant content and experiences, with a huge investment in content and stories that people want to see.
Mike Fries and Josh Sapan were being interviewed by Financial Times European Media Correspondent David Bond on the first monring of Cable Congress 2016 in Warsaw.
Mike Fries said that “TV is a powerful product. The cable industry has growing up to do, and change – but it’s already happening. We spend a lot of time thinking about how to make that TV experience better and we have evolved.”
Josh Sapan noted that cable video subscriptions are going up, and that aggregate video consumption is increasing because “people love stories and TV is the predominant place for stories that people love.”
Earlier, Peter Hinssen, Chairman of nexxworks, gave the opening keynote speech with a vision of future technology development and the promise that “smart will be the new normal.” Hinssen challenged the cable industry to develop a “moonshot mindset” to stay relevant, and warned that the world is moving from a “digital first to mobile first” approach to one of “mobile first to AI (artificial intelligence) first.”
Both Fries and Sapan agreed that investment in content is key to success in the cable sector, and that ensuring customers have access to the content they want is crucial, on any platform they want. Fries responded to the challenge of consumers wanting flexibility, noting that today, customers “don’t have to be tethered to the box to enjoy our content,” and stressing that “people are mostly watching high quality content and are willing to pay for it.”
Combined with the increasing demand for internet bandwidth that cable offers, Fries and Sapan agreed that focusing on delivering what people want is the reason for cable’s success, as evidenced by latest figures showing increased subscriptions and revenue for the industry.
Mike Fries concluded “I have never been more excited about our industry than now. I love the way we have innovated as an industry, changed the way people access content and enabled innovation.”
Cable Congress 2016 is taking place in Warsaw from Tuesday 28 June until Thursday 30 June. Today’s opening day is focusing on disruption, followed by day 2 on innovation and the final day on action. Please visit www.cablecongress.com for the latest updates, talk to us on Twitter via @CableEurope, and follow the conversation live using #cablecongress.
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