Exclusive: Programme spending to hit $164bn in 2023, as acquisitions return to growth

La Mesías

Broadcasters and streamers are set to spend $164bn on programming in 2023 with investment in acquired shows rising to $69.6bn following a downturn in 2022, according to research exclusively revealed to TBI.

Spending from networks, pay-TV platforms and streamers worldwide is expected to be up 1% from last year’s total of $161.6bn in 2022 and almost 3% on 2021’s figure of $159.1bn, with the totals not including spending on sports.

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The figures, which come from Omdia’s soon-to-launch report World TV Production 2023, also show that North America will account for 52% of the worldwide total this year, slightly more than the 49% share in 2021.

Asia and Oceania is the next largest region, with China driving total programming spend to 23% of the world total, while investment in shows across Western Europe is set to make up 15%.


The $164bn figure is made up of $94bn spending on original programming, while acquired shows make up $69.6bn.

Acquired programming dipped from 2021’s $70bn to $67.8bn in 2022, with Omdia’s research lead for digital content & channels Tim Westcott telling TBI that a significant factor in the downturn is believed to be the US studios making less money on third-party sales.

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“The acquisition drop-off last year followed the US studios taking much of their premium content off the market for their own DTC streamers, with third-party licensing declining,” he told TBI, with that strategy now all but reversed by most US-based operators leading to an increase in 2023.

Westcott added: “Programme spending is up in the US and around the world, but with production costs rising in many regions, that 1% year-on-year increase underlines some of the challenges facing producers globally.

“It is also worth noting how the rate of original content investment has slowed, partly impacted by the US writers strike but also by streamers trying to make their DTC offerings more profitable.

“Europe has also been a challenging market. This comes on top of a lot of commissioners freezing licence fees as production costs increase.”

The findings come at the end of a busy three days at MIPCOM that have underlined the increasingly flexible nature of third-party sales, with US studios both selling more content globally and picking up rights to shows, such as HBO Latin America’s recent deal for La Mesias.

To hear more about global spending trends, join Tim Westcott’s session – The Landscape For TV & Online Producion Funding – at MIPCOM, taking place at the Seaview Producers’ Hub, 16:00 – 16:30.

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