Four Emerging Trends in Film & TV
In 2020, the Film & TV industry experienced unprecedented growth. Amidst the global pandemic, audience demand for streaming services surged, production spending grew, and TV series budgets reached all-time highs.
The industry’s growth isn’t likely to slow down anytime soon and with the recent slew of media mergers, even more change is on the horizon.
What key developments in the Film & TV industry are worth paying attention to? Based on research compiled by Purely Streamonomics, here’s a look at the four emerging trends that could revolutionize the industry as we know it.
#1: Uptick in New Streaming Platforms
As worldwide lockdown measures drove people indoors, audience demand for home entertainment surged.
Between 2019-2020, the number of global online video subscriptions increased by 26%, reaching 1.2 billion subscriptions. This growth is expected to continue in the coming years—in fact, by 2025, subscriptions are expected to reach 1.6 billion worldwide.
In tandem with this growing audience demand, new streaming platforms are entering the market at an accelerated pace. 2020 welcomed four new subscription video on demand (SVOD) platforms: Apple TV, HBO Max, Peacock, and Disney+.
New SVOD platforms have garnered large audiences in a short amount of time. For example, Disney+ has already gained over 100 million subscribers since its launch in November 2020.
|Platform||Paid Subscribers (latest available data as of June 2021)|
|Prime Video||200 million|
|Tencent Video||123 million|
|HBO Max||63.9 million|
|Eros Now||36.2 million|
In addition to SVOD services, advertising video on demand (AVOD) platforms—which generate revenue through ads instead of subscribers—are also gaining popularity. Some of these ad-funded services have built up larger audiences than their SVOD counterparts. For instance, IMDb’s free platform IMDbTV has 55 million monthly active users, which is more than Hulu’s number of paid subscribers.
#2: Surge in Content Spending
As more platforms emerge and audience demand grows, spending on content production continues to ramp up as well.
In 2020, a record-breaking $220.2 billion was spent on making and acquiring new feature films and TV programming—that’s a 16.5% increase compared to production spending in 2019.
Where in the world is all this production spending coming from? Perhaps unsurprisingly, over two-thirds of global spending in 2020 came from the U.S. and Canada.
|Region||2020 Production Spending||% Change (YoY)|
|U.S. & Canada||$149.3 billion||16.1%|
|Latin America||$5.2 billion||32.9%|
|Africa & Middle East||$2.8 billion||46.3%|
Despite Hollywood’s dominance, it’s worth noting that smaller markets in regions such as Latin America, Africa, and the Middle East experienced significant growth in 2020.
#3: Spending on Indie Content Rises
With overall content spending at an all-time high, the independent film (indie) market is experiencing growth as well. In fact, of the billions spent on content production, over half went to indie filmmakers.
Keep in mind, this estimate includes direct spending on indie content, along with indirect funding through licensing and co-financing agreements with big studios. In other words, players like Disney and Warner Bros. still technically produce the most content—however, they often outsource production work to independent filmmakers, or buy the rights to indie content, to distribute on their streaming platforms.
All in all, global spending on indie content increased by 25.3% in 2020, year-over-year. And this indie growth could continue into 2021 and beyond, as distributors and streaming giants rush to fill their content pipelines that have run dry because of production challenges and delays caused by COVID-19.
#4: TV Budgets Continue to Soar
As more competition enters the streaming market, producers are facing pressure to up their production value so they can keep their audience’s attention. In other words, because the stakes are getting higher, the cost of production is rising—especially for TV.
In 2020, the budget for an average TV series in the U.S. was $59.6 million, a 16.5% increase year-over-year. One of the most high-cost TV shows last year was WandaVision, a Marvel Cinematic Universe series that cost Disney approximately $200 million (which breaks down to around $25 million per episode).
As series budgets rise, the line between film and TV has started to blur. For instance, characters and narratives from WandaVision will have direct ties to the upcoming Doctor Strange sequel, which gives fans an extra incentive to watch the Disney+ series.
No Ceiling in Sight for the Film & TV Industry
Despite months of disruptions caused by COVID-19, the Film & TV industry showed resilience in 2020. But it’s only just the beginning—as audience demand continues to grow, and budgets keep rising, growth has become the new normal.
This graphic is brought to you by Purely Streamonomics, a monthly newsletter that provides key insights into the global Film & TV market.
Visualizing the Global Silver Supply Chain
Nearly 50% of global silver production comes from South and Central America. Here’s a look at the global silver supply chain.
Visualizing the Global Silver Supply Chain
Although silver is widely known as a precious metal, its industrial uses accounted for more than 50% of silver demand in 2020.
From jewelry to electronics, various industries utilize silver’s high conductivity, aesthetic appeal, and other properties in different ways. With the adoption of electric vehicles, 5G networks, and solar panels, the world is embracing more technologies that rely on silver.
But behind all this silver are the companies that mine and refine the precious metal before it reaches other industries.
The above infographic from Blackrock Silver outlines silver’s global supply chain and brings the future of silver supply into the spotlight.
The Top 20 Countries for Silver Mining
Although silver miners operate in many countries across the globe, the majority of silver comes from a few regions.
|Rank||Country||2020 Production (million ounces)||% of Total|
|8||United States 🇺🇸||31.7||4.0%|
|18||Papua New Guinea 🇵🇬||4.2||0.5%|
|19||Dominican Republic 🇩🇴||3.8||0.5%|
|N/A||Rest of the World 🌎||34.2||4.4%|
Mexico, Peru, and China—the top three producers—combined for just over 50% of global silver production in 2020. South and Central American countries, including Mexico and Peru, produced around 390 million ounces—roughly half of the 784 million ounces mined globally.
Silver currency backed China’s entire economy at one point in history. Today, China is not only the third-largest silver producer but also the third-largest largest consumer of silver jewelry.
Poland is one of only three European countries in the mix. More than 99% of Poland’s silver comes from the KGHM Polska Miedź Mine, the world’s largest silver mining operation.
While silver’s supply chain spans all four hemispheres, concentrated production in a few countries puts it at risk of disruptions.
The Sustainability of Silver’s Supply Chain
The mining industry can often be subject to political crossfire in jurisdictions that aren’t safe or politically stable. Mexico, Chile, and Peru—three of the top five silver-producing nations—have the highest number of mining conflicts in Latin America.
Alongside production in politically unstable jurisdictions, the lack of silver-primary mines reinforces the need for a sustainable silver supply chain. According to the World Silver Survey, only 27% of silver comes from silver-primary mines. The other 73% is a by-product of mining for other metals like copper, zinc, gold, and others.
As the industrial demand for silver rises, primary sources of silver in stable jurisdictions will become more valuable—and Nevada is one such jurisdiction.
Nevada: The Silver State
Nevada, known as the Silver State, was once the pinnacle of silver mining in the United States.
The discovery of the Comstock Lode in 1859, one of America’s richest silver deposits, spurred a silver rush in Nevada. But after the Comstock Lode mines began declining around 1874, it was the Tonopah district that brought Nevada’s silver production back to life.
Tonopah is a silver-primary district with a 100:1 silver-to-gold ratio. It also boasts 174 million ounces of historical silver production under its belt. Furthermore, between 1900 and 1950, Tonopah produced high-grade silver with an average grade of 1,384 grams per tonne. However, the Second World War brought a stop to mining in Tonopah, with plenty of silver left to discover.
Today, Nevada is the second-largest silver-producing state in the U.S. and the Tonopah district offers the opportunity to revive a secure and stable source of primary silver production for the future.
Blackrock Silver is working to bring silver back to the Silver State with exploration at its flagship Tonopah West project in Nevada.
A Complete Visual Guide to Carbon Markets
Carbon markets are booming. But how do they work? In this infographic, we show how carbon markets are advancing corporate climate ambitions.
A Complete Visual Guide to Carbon Markets
Carbon markets enable the trading of carbon credits, also referred to as carbon offsets.
One carbon credit is equivalent to one metric ton of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Going further, carbon markets help companies offset their emissions and work towards their climate goals. But how exactly do carbon markets work?
In this infographic from Carbon Streaming Corporation, we look at the fundamentals of carbon markets and why they show significant growth potential.
What Are Carbon Markets?
For many companies, such as Microsoft, Delta, Shell and Gucci, carbon markets play an important role in offsetting their impact on the environment and meeting climate targets.
Companies buy a carbon credit, which funds a GHG reduction project such as reforestation. This allows the company to offset their GHG emissions. There are two main types of carbon markets, based on whether emission reductions are mandatory, or voluntary:
Mandatory systems regulated by government organizations to cap emissions for specific industries.
Voluntary Carbon Markets:
Where carbon credits can be purchased by those that voluntarily want to offset their emissions.
As demand to cut emissions intensifies, voluntary carbon market volume has grown five-fold in less than five years.
Drivers of Carbon Market Demand
What factors are behind this surge in volume?
- Paris Agreement: Companies seeking alignment with these goals.
- Technological Gaps: Companies are limited by technologies that are available at scale and not cost-prohibitive.
- Time Gaps: Companies do not have the means to eliminate all emissions today.
- Shareholder Pressure: Companies are facing pressure from shareholders to address their emissions.
For these reasons, carbon markets are a useful tool in decarbonizing the global economy.
Voluntary Markets 101
To start, there are four key participants in voluntary carbon markets:
- Project Developers: Teams who design and implement carbon offset projects that generate carbon credits.
- Standards Bodies: Organizations that certify and set the criteria for carbon offsets e.g. Verra and the Gold Standard.
- Brokers: Intermediaries facilitating carbon credit transactions between buyers and project developers.
- End Buyers: Entities such as individuals or corporations looking to offset their carbon emissions through purchasing carbon credits.
Secondly, carbon offset projects fall within one of two main categories.
Avoidance / reduction projects prevent or reduce the release of carbon into the atmosphere. These may include avoided deforestation or projects that preserve biomass.
Removal / sequestration projects, on the other hand, remove carbon from the atmosphere, where projects may focus on reforestation or direct air capture.
In addition, carbon offset projects may offer co-benefits, which provide advantages that go beyond carbon reduction.
What are Co-Benefits?
When a carbon project offers co-benefits, it means that they provide features on top of carbon credits, such as environmental or economic characteristics, that may align with UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Here are some examples of co-benefits a project may offer:
- Biodiversity: Protecting local wildlife that would otherwise be endangered through deforestation.
- Social: Promoting gender equality through supporting women in management positions and local business development.
- Economic: Creating job opportunities in local communities.
- Educational: Providing educational awareness of carbon mitigation within local areas, such as primary and secondary schools.
Often, companies are looking to buy carbon credits that make the greatest sustainable impact. Co-benefits can offer additional value that simultaneously address broader climate challenges.
Why Market Values Are Increasing
In 2021, market values in voluntary carbon markets are set to exceed $1 billion.
|Year||Traded Volume of Carbon Offsets (MtCO₂e)||Voluntary Market Transaction Value|
*As of Aug. 31, 2021
Source: Ecosystem Marketplace (Sep 2021)
Today, oil majors, banks, and airlines are active players in the market. As corporate climate targets multiply, future demand for carbon credits is projected to jump 15-fold by 2030 according to the Task Force on Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets.
What Qualifies as a High-Quality Carbon Offset?
Here are five key criteria for examining the quality of a carbon offset:
- Additionality: Projects are unable to exist without revenue derived from carbon credits.
- Verification: Monitored, reported, and verified by a credible third-party.
- Permanence: Carbon reduction or removal will not be reversed.
- Measurability: Calculated according to scientific data through a recognized methodology.
- Avoid Leakage: An increase in emissions should not occur elsewhere, or account for any that do occur.
In fact, the road to net-zero requires a 23 gigatonne (GT) annual reduction in CO₂ emissions relative to current levels. High quality offsets can help meet this goal.
Fighting Climate Change
As the urgency to tackle global emissions accelerates, demand for carbon credits is poised to increase substantially—bringing much needed capital to innovative projects.
Not only do carbon credits fund nature-based projects, they also finance technological advancements and new innovations in carbon removal and reduction. For companies looking to reach their climate ambitions, carbon markets will continue to play a more concrete role.
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