In the words of Tina Wamala, Multichoice Uganda’s PR Manager, DStv Uganda has braved a ‘perfect storm’ of economic hardships, disgruntled subscribers and stiff competition from new pretenders to the Pay TV throne and inevitably come out on top. The pioneer Pay TV service provider has announced massive price cuts to its existing bouquets on top of gifting subscribers with new premium channels at no extra cost.
Starting 1st November 2016, DStv Premium, Compact Plus, Compact and Family will cost up to 15% less. On top of this, subscribers will enjoy premium content including Super Sport, FOX, History channel and Discovery. DSTV Premium will also have 4 new HD channels to bring the total to 20 on the bouquet.
We are going to write a bunch of stuff to give this new development context because, in light of the current subscription-based TV environment, this is a big deal. Alternatively, you can skip to the table below to check out the new subscription rates and the extra channels DStv will include at no extra charge.
Trending under the hashtags #DSTVvalue and #BusinessUnusual, Multichoice left no stone unturned. They even hired TV/Radio personality Roger Mugisha and comedian (also new DStv Uganda band ambassador) Anne Kansiime to drum up publicity for their campaign. DStv Uganda has struggled to shed the perception among subscribers as an expensive Pay TV option. This has pushed many to alternative service providers like Zuku, Star Times and Azam.
Quotable: I think all of you are asking this: ‘why are we doing this,’ but our priority is to put our customer at the heart of everything we do. This campaign is for the customers. We want to reconnect with our customers. We have had so many complaints. We did a tweet chat two months ago and the biggest problem was, ‘you guys are very expensive,’ so we’ve listened and we are back with some answers to what you asked before. So that is the [reason for] price drop that we have. And other than price drop there is more value for what you pay for ~ Phoebe Nakabazzi, Multichoice Uganda Marketing Manager
“This significant price drop, coupled with the major boost in entertainment value across all DStv packages demonstrates our commitment to ensuring DStv customers receive the best possible access to great entertainment and outstanding value. For new customers the price reductions in both subscription prices and state of the art decoders at just UGX 130 000 (full kit including one month of compact) will ensure that great family entertainment is available to everyone at the most affordable price.” Charles Hamya, General Manager, MultiChoice Uganda.
DStv Uganda new bouquets/package prices and channels
Bouquet New Price Old Price New Channels
DSTV Premium UGX 287,250
UGX 334,000 4 new HD channels
DSTV Compact Plus UGX 190,700 UGX 225,000 Vuzu AMP
Crime & Investigation
Africa Magic Showcase
SuperSport 4 (SS4)
SuperSport 6 (SS6)
DSTV Compact UGX 121,600 UGX 128,000 ITV Choice
Super Sport 4 (SS4)
DSTV Family UGX 66,750 UGX 73,000 FOX
Super Sport 4 (SS4)
DSTV Access ROK
Dignited captured some of the reactions to the above mentioned DStv Tweetchat. DStv has faced stiff competition from the likes of Zuku and Star Times, especially in the last year. They faced a backlash for increasing subscription rates at a time when the economy was reeling from effects of inflation.
This decision came to haunt them as their competitors chose to take the opposite approach. In fact, a price reduction has long been pending. Techjaja last week predicted the price reduction in light of the entry of a new player in the market. Zimbabwe’s ECONET applied for a TV licence from the Uganda Communications Commission to for their free-to-air Kwese TV.