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A recent report has shed light on the presence of US companies in the European children's TV channel market. According to the study, a staggering 48% of children's TV channels in Europe are owned by US companies. The findings indicate a significant influence of American players in shaping the media landscape for young audiences in Europe.

The report, titled "Audiovisual Media Services in Europe," was published by the European Audiovisual Observatory, a division of the Council of Europe based in Strasbourg.

It provides an overview of TV channels and on-demand services in Europe, offering insights into the ever-evolving audiovisual sector. Dr. Agnes Schneeberger, an analyst within the Observatory's Department for Market Information, authored the report.

The study reveals that the European audiovisual media services sector encompasses a total of 12,664 services available across the region. Among these, approximately three-quarters are linear services, representing 9,349 TV channels, while the remaining one-quarter consists of non-linear services such as video-on-demand (VOD) platforms and video-sharing platforms, totaling 3,315 services.

When examining ownership, the report highlights the division between public and private sectors in the European TV market. The public sector primarily focuses on generalist programming available through digital terrestrial television (DTT) networks, while the private sector has expanded into thematic cable, IPTV, and satellite channels. Notably, nearly all on-demand services in Europe are privately owned (97%), with public service media also entering the market by offering catch-up services for their linear programming. Furthermore, a significant portion of public on-demand services operate as paid services, including the international version of the BBC iPlayer.

The study also emphasizes the considerable presence of non-European players in the European audiovisual market. Among the top 50 TV groups and on-demand services, more than one-third have a non-European parent company. In this context, US players hold the largest share, with 18% of all private TV channels (excluding local TV) being US-owned. Additionally, over one-third of subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) and transactional video-on-demand (TVOD) services in Europe are owned by US companies.

US companies' dominance extends specifically to children's TV channels, with a significant 48% market share. Well-known brands such as Paramount's Nickelodeon, Disney's Disney Channel, AT&T's Cartoon Network, and AMC Networks' JimJam exemplify the US influence in this segment. Moreover, US players also dominate the adult online entertainment sector, accounting for a substantial 59% share of entertainment SVOD services in Europe.

The report highlights the extensive reach of US players across European markets. The Walt Disney Company, for instance, has a presence in 44 European TV markets, demonstrating their virtual omnipresence in the region. Notably, different strategies are employed by pan-European players in terms of establishment hubs. Netflix, for example, adopts a centralized approach, targeting European markets from one main country of establishment. On the other hand, Vivendi employs a multi-country strategy, utilizing a small number of countries as a basis to target various national markets. AT&T follows a decentralized strategy, establishing a larger number of hubs to serve the European markets.

The findings of this report provide valuable insights into the European audiovisual landscape, revealing the significant presence of US companies in the children's TV channel market. As the media industry continues to evolve, understanding the dynamics of ownership and market dominance is crucial for stakeholders and policymakers alike.