Ziggo
TypeBesloten Vennootschap
IndustryTelecommunications
PredecessorsMultikabel
@Home
Casema
UPC Nederland
Founded16 May 2008
FounderMultikabel
@Home
Casema
UPC Nederland
HeadquartersUtrecht, Netherlands
Key people
Jeroen Hoencamp (CEO)
ProductsCable television
Digital television
Internet
Telephony
Mobile Telephony
RevenueIncrease 1,564.8 million (2013)[1]
Increase € 347.3 million (2013)[1]
OwnerVodafoneZiggo
Number of employees
2,571 FTE (2013 avg.)[1]
ParentVodafoneZiggo
Websiteziggo.nl
Previous Ziggo logo
Previous Ziggo logo

Ziggo Holding B.V. (Dutch pronunciation: [zɪɣ(ː)oː]) is the largest cable operator in the Netherlands, providing digital cable television, Internet, and telephone service to both residential and commercial customers.[2]

History

The company is the result of the merger between Multikabel, @Home, and Casema and launched officially on 16 May 2008. Later followed by a merger with UPC Nederland in the first quarter of 2015, at that time the second largest cable company in the Netherlands. It kept the brand name Ziggo. Its main competitors are KPN and CanalDigitaal.

Most of the share capital was up to 2012 held by holding companies of two private equity firms: Cinven and Warburg Pincus.[3]

On 21 March 2012, Ziggo was listed on the NYSE Euronext stock exchange and later incorporated into the midcap equity AMX index. Additionally, there are options traded on the Ziggo share.

Cinven and Warburg Pincus started to reduce their stake in Ziggo and exited Ziggo in April 2013.[4][5][6]

In March 2013, Liberty Global acquired a 12.65% stake in Ziggo.[7] This grew to 15% in April and 28.5% in July.[8]

On 27 January 2014, Liberty Global announced that it would be acquiring all remaining shares in Ziggo for €10 billion.[9] The takeover was subject to regulatory approval and was expected to close by the second quarter of 2014, when Ziggo was expected to merge with UPC Nederland.[10] In May 2014, the European Commission announced opening an in-depth investigation to assess whether the proposed acquisition of Ziggo by Liberty Global is in line with the EU Merger Regulation.[11] The opening of an in-depth inquiry does not prejudge the outcome of the investigation. In November 2014, Liberty Global took over Ziggo. In December 2014, the shares of Ziggo N.V. were delisted from Euronext Amsterdam as Ziggo was converted into the Dutch private limited company (besloten vennootschap) Ziggo Holding B.V.[12]

On 5 January 2015, Ziggo started to harmonize its cable network with the UPC Nederland cable network. The name UPC was finally phased out in favor of Ziggo on 13 April 2015.[13]

On 15 February 2016, British telecommunications company Vodafone announced the merger of their Dutch operations Vodafone Netherlands with Liberty Global, the owner of Ziggo.[14][15] The deal was closed on 31 December, creating a new parent company for both Ziggo and Vodafone, called VodafoneZiggo, with a 50/50 joint ownership by Liberty Global and Vodafone.[16][17][18]

Cable television

In 2014 the Ziggo hybrid fiber-coaxial cable network (a broadband network that combines optical fiber and coaxial cable) passed 7.140 million homes in the Netherlands.[19] In 2020 it consisted of 40,350 km (25,072 mi) of fiber-optic cables that transported 97% of the total data volume in the network. The final 3%, averaging the last 300 m (328 yd) from the neighborhood's hubsite optical node to the final customer connection, are transported by 412,600 km (256,378 mi) of coaxial cables.[20][21]

Technology

Television signal

The digital television signal is transmitted in the Digital Video Broadcasting-Cable (DVB-C) standard. The high-definition channels are encoded in H.264/MPEG-4 AVC and most standard-definition channels are encoded in MPEG-4. Only a part of the free-to-cable standard-definition channels are still encoded in MPEG-2. Customers can buy or rent a certified set-top box or Integrated Digital Television with embedded CA. Additionally customers can buy any television or set-top box with a DVB-C tuner for the free-to-cable basic subscription and optionally included by CI+ support with a Ziggo compatible conditional-access module for supplemental packages. As of 2015, Ziggo uses both the Nagravision and Irdeto conditional access system.

In 2022 Internet Protocol television (IPTV) was introduced for delivery of television content over Internet Protocol (IP) networks. For this the Next Mini decoder was introduced as standard television receiver for customers that also have an internet subscription.[22] This IPTV-only television decoder is similar to the Liberty Global Mini TV Box[23] and makes all television content visible via IPTV.[24] The Next Mini is connected with the Ziggo network via Ethernet wiring or wireless via Wi-Fi.[25] The number of television channels and other IP-stream content that can be viewed with IPTV hardware over a coax cable or fibre-optic cable based high-speed internet connection within a household is virtually unlimited. Practically, the provider determines which television channels and other content IP-streams are forwarded or not. Speculation is circulating on the internet that Ziggo introduced IPTV to make it easier for customers of competing combined high-speed internet and IPTV services providers, to switch to Ziggo or that DVB-C will be switched off in the future.[26]

Previously, Ziggo also offered an analogue television signal. Between 2018 and 2021, it gradually phased out the analogue signal.[27][28]

Radio signal

The digital radio signal is transmitted in the DVB-C standard. For digital radio a 2-channel (stereo) MPEG-1 Audio Layer II encoded digital audio broadcasting signal at 48 kHz audio sampling rate is used.[29] According to measurements the bit rates of the offered digital radio channels vary, and some radio channels have a variable bit rate (VBR).[30] A company spokesperson stated Ziggo passes the digital radio stations to its end users as provided by the radio channels and does not re-encode, change or edit these digital signals to avoid quality reduction.[31]

Previously, Ziggo also offered an analogue radio signal. Between February 2021 and March 2022 the analogue FM cable radio signal was gradually phased out.[32][33][34][35][36] According to TVTotaal the analogue FM cable radio service was terminated because due to competitive pressure Ziggo needed the bandwidth to increase the upload speed of the internet service.[37][38] According to VodafoneZiggo; "The freed-up bandwidth allows us to offer even more television and internet services, such as increasing image quality and adding apps." and "We continue to innovate and look ahead, so that our GigaNet (internet service) grows with the needs of our customers. The complete switch to digital radio is a crucial part of that."[39] For customers who are not able to receive the digital radio signal, Ziggo up to 29 May 2022 offers a digital radio receiver for €50 as an alternative for analogue FM cable radio reception equipment.[40]

Channels

Ziggo provides about 200 linear television channels and more than 100 linear radio channels,[41] DVR service, video-on-demand content, catch-up TV from public television broadcasters and commercial television stations and interactive television. About 40 TV channels and 40 radio channels are transmitted in clear, while most premium channels are transmitted encrypted.[42]

Basic service is called Kabel TV[43] and consists of about 40 digital television channels, as well as 40 digital and analogue radio channels. It consists of all the major Dutch networks and some of the main networks of neighbouring countries. Additional TV and radio channels are available through "TV Standard", "Movies & Series XL" and premium packages. Every additional package comes with Xite Music which offers 40 additional radio channels, as well as interactive video on demand services.

As of 2022 Ziggo offers most television channels in 1080i or 720p HD format.[42] Also including premium film and sport services such as Film1 HD, ESPN HD and Ziggo Sport Totaal HD. The rest are part of basic service. A few channels/programmes are (sometimes temporarily) offered in 1080p Full HD, 4K Ultra HD and if available in HDR color representation.

On 4 July 2009 the Dutch public broadcaster NPO started simulcasting NPO 1, NPO 2, and NPO 3 in 1080i high-definition.[44] These public HD channels are part of basic service.

Ziggo GO

Ziggo GO is an online television service from Ziggo. The service allows users to watch live TV and on demand video content from a PC, laptop, tablet and mobile phone. It is also possible to stream live TV on Chromecast and Apple TV. The service was introduced by UPC in 2012. It was named Horizon TV app or Horizon GO.[45] The service was renamed by Ziggo GO on 9 November 2016.[46]

From 2017 until 2021 - after the closing of HBO Netherlands[47] and before the Netherlands launch of HBO Max, all HBO content was available on Ziggo GO.

Internet

Ziggo Dome indoor arena in Amsterdam
Ziggo Dome indoor arena in Amsterdam

In the Netherlands, there are three types of connections for landline broadband access internet available: (A)DSL, cable and fiber-optics. Almost every of the about 8 million Dutch households in 2021 had (A)DSL and cable internet access. At the end of 2021 4.57 million Dutch omes were passed by fiber-to-the-home (FFTH) networks.[48] Ziggo offers cable broadband internet subscriptions, and their hybrid fiber-coaxial (fiber-to-the-neighborhood [FFTN]) network passed 7.328 million Dutch homes in 2021. For internet, Ziggo used and uses various versions of Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification (DOCSIS) technology. DOCSIS is used by many cable television operators to provide cable internet access over hybrid fiber-coaxial infrastructure. As Ziggo is a European operator, the used DOCSIS standards earlier than DOCSIS 3.1 were modified for use in Europe (EuroDOCSIS).

As of December 2017, Ziggo had 3.240 million Internet access subscribers.[19]

On 10 October 2019 Ziggo started the deployment of DOCSIS 3.1 in limited regions. This upgrade to DOCSIS 3.1 enabled download speeds up to 1 Gbit/s and is marketed as GigaNet.[49] Since then EuroDOCSIS 3.1 was rolled out widely to offer asymmetric Internet access with asymmetric upload speeds of up to 50 Mbit/s. Ziggo aims to complete the DOCSIS 3.1 roll-out operation by the end of 2022.[50] At the same time, the company is preparing for DOCSIS 4.0 (previously branded as DOCSIS 3.1 Full Duplex).[51][52]

Telephony

As of December 2017, Ziggo has 2.551 million subscribers to their land-line telephone services.[19] It also offered a virtual mobile phone service. Ziggo Mobile stopped offering new subscriptions in April 2017,[53] and existing customers were migrated to Vodafone Netherlands in September 2017.[54]

Triple play

As of December 2017, 64.7% of subscribers have a triple play subscription: a cable television, internet and telephone service bundle.[19]

Customers and business performance

At the end of 2020, the company provided at least one service to more than 3,836,300 households: 3,831,300 households with television, 3,363,500 households with an internet connection and 2,272,800 households with telephony. It then had 5,189,800 mobile subscribers (4,757,100 postpaid and 432,700 prepaid).[55]. In 2021 there were about 8,000,000 households in the Netherlands.

Year[56] Homes passed[57] Fixed services customers Mobile services customers Revenue Operating income
2014 6,982,700 4,291,600 € 2,534.800,000 € 198,400,000
2015 7,023,200 4,090,400 € 2,472,700,000 € 108,800,000
2016 7,089,500 3,978,600 € 4,172,900,000 € 301,000,000
2017 7,140,000 3,920,000 4,800,000 € 4,091,100,000 € 192,600,000
2018 7,200,000 3,900,000 4,960,000 € 3,895,000,000 € 110,600,000
2019 7,250,000 3,880,000 5,065,000 € 3,937,000,000 € 106,400,000
2020 7,300,000 3,836,300 5,189,800 € 4,000,000,000 € 248,600,000
2021 7,328,000 3,738,800 5,365,400 € 4,076,900,000 € 296,900,000

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c Ziggo Bond Company B.V. (2014). "Ziggo NV Annual Report 2013" (PDF). Retrieved 15 April 2015.
  2. ^ Gertjan Groen (29 January 2008). "Kabelbedrijf Zesko verder onder de naam Ziggo". Telecomwereld.nl (in Dutch). Retrieved 15 May 2008.
  3. ^ "Ziggo Investor Relations". Ziggo.com. Retrieved 23 December 2011.
  4. ^ Cinven and Warburg Pincus plan to further reduce stake in Ziggo N.V.
  5. ^ Cinven and Warburg Pincus have further reduced stake in Ziggo N.V.
  6. ^ Briel, Robert (29 April 2013). "Cinven, Warburg Pincus exit Ziggo". Broadband TV News. Retrieved 27 January 2014.
  7. ^ Briel, Robert (28 March 2013). "Liberty Global acquires 12.65% stake in Ziggo". Broadband TV News. Retrieved 27 January 2014.
  8. ^ Briel, Robert (28 July 2013). "Liberty Global increases stake in Ziggo to 28.5%". Broadband TV News. Retrieved 27 January 2014.
  9. ^ "Liberty Global to Acquire Ziggo Strategic combination creates national Dutch cable operator" (PDF). Ziggo.com. 26 January 2014. Retrieved 26 January 2014.
  10. ^ Briel, Robert (27 January 2014). "Liberty Global to acquire Ziggo for €10bn". Broadband TV News. Retrieved 27 January 2014.
  11. ^ Briel, EC Press Release (18 May 2014). "Mergers: Commission opens in-depth investigation into proposed acquisition of Dutch cable operator Ziggo by Liberty Global". European Commissions. Retrieved 18 May 2014.
  12. ^ Ziggo completes delisting and converts to a Dutch private limited company
  13. ^ "UPC en Ziggo nu samen als Ziggo verder". TotaalTV.nl. 13 April 2015.
  14. ^ "Liberty Global and Vodafone to merge their Dutch operations". Vodafone. Retrieved 1 January 2017.
  15. ^ Andrew Trotman, Kate Palmer (16 February 2016). "Vodafone and Liberty Global announce Dutch tie-up". The Telegraph. Retrieved 9 September 2016.
  16. ^ "Liberty Global and Vodafone complete Dutch JV". markets.ft.com. Financial Times. 3 January 2017. Retrieved 4 June 2018.
  17. ^ "Joint venture VodafoneZiggo afgerond". Het Financieele Dagblad. Retrieved 1 January 2017.
  18. ^ "Liberty Global and Vodafone complete Dutch joint venture, creating a fully-converged national communications operator" (PDF). VodafoneZiggo. 31 December 2016.
  19. ^ a b c d "VodafoneZiggo Group B.V Annual Report 2017" (PDF). Liberty Global.
  20. ^ Jarco Kriek (2 October 2019). "Concurrentiestrijd KPN en Ziggo: Levert Ziggo diensten via kabel of glasvezel?" (in Dutch). Totaal TV.
  21. ^ Ziggo (12 May 2020). "Het netwerk van de toekomst" (in Dutch). Ziggo.
  22. ^ TotaalTV. "Ziggo legt stevig fundament overstap IPTV-only: einde DVB-C nabij?" (in Dutch). TotaalTV. Retrieved 2 November 2022.
  23. ^ Liberty Global Mini TV Box
  24. ^ TotaalTV. "Getest in Totaal TV: de Next Mini, Ziggo's supercompacte decoder" (in Dutch). TotaalTV. Retrieved 2 November 2022.
  25. ^ TotaalTV. "Ziggo Next Mini: Een andere manier van kijken" (in Dutch). TotaalTV. Retrieved 2 November 2022.
  26. ^ TotaalTV. "Waarom zet Ziggo in op IPTV en Next Mini?" (in Dutch). TotaalTV. Retrieved 2 November 2022.
  27. ^ "Ziggo maakt tv-aanbod volledig digitaal" [Ziggo makes TV-offer fully digital] (in Dutch). VodafoneZiggo. 8 March 2018.
  28. ^ Joris Jansen (14 April 2021). "Ziggo voltooit afsluiten van analoog tv-signaal in Nederland" [Ziggo completes shutdown of analogue TV signal in the Netherlands]. Tweakers (in Dutch).
  29. ^ Techopedia. "MPEG-1 Audio Layer II (MP2)". techopedia.com. Retrieved 17 March 2022.
  30. ^ Digital TV Radio scanning and measurement Netherlands Cable Ziggo
  31. ^ TotaalTV. "Ziggo gaat zenders niet met meer bandbreedte aan klanten leveren" (in Dutch). TotaalTV. Retrieved 18 March 2022.
  32. ^ Ziggo. "Ziggo klanten in regio Capelle aan den IJssel stappen over op digitale radio" (in Dutch). Ziggo. Retrieved 19 January 2021.
  33. ^ Ziggo. "Ziggo klanten in regio's Helmond, Groningen en Den Bosch stappen over op digitale radio" (in Dutch). Ziggo. Retrieved 17 March 2022.
  34. ^ Ziggo. "Zenderoverzicht Analoge radiozenders" (in Dutch). Ziggo. Retrieved 26 April 2021.
  35. ^ mediamagazine.nl. "Ziggo schakelt in laatste regio's analoge radiosignaal uit" (in Dutch). mediamagazine.nl. Retrieved 29 March 2022.
  36. ^ groningen.nieuws.nl. "Ziggo gestopt met analoge radio" (in Dutch). groningen.nieuws.nl. Retrieved 29 March 2022.
  37. ^ TotaalTV. "Ziggo bezig aan versobering diensten bij laatste klanten" (in Dutch). TotaalTV. Retrieved 18 March 2022.
  38. ^ mediamagazine.nl. "Ziggo heeft definitief afscheid genomen van analoge radio" (in Dutch). mediamagazine.nl. Retrieved 1 April 2022.
  39. ^ Ziggo. "Alle Ziggo-klanten volledig omgeschakeld naar digitale radio" (in Dutch). Ziggo. Retrieved 1 April 2022.
  40. ^ Ziggo. "Digitale radio ontvanger (Quantis QE317)" [Radio receiver] (in Dutch). Ziggo. Retrieved 26 March 2021.
  41. ^ Ziggo. "Zenderoverzicht Radio" [Radio channel overview] (in Dutch). Ziggo. Retrieved 5 February 2015.
  42. ^ a b Ziggo. "Zenderoverzicht TV" [TV channel overview] (in Dutch). Ziggo. Retrieved 1 February 2022.
  43. ^ Ziggo. "TV-abonnementen Vergelijken" [Compare TV plans] (in Dutch). Ziggo. Retrieved 4 May 2015.
  44. ^ JK (16 June 2009). "Nederlandse Publieke Omroep dicht bij start HDTV". TotaalTV (in Dutch). SBS Broadcasting. Retrieved 3 June 2009.
  45. ^ Kriek, Jarco (13 September 2012). "UPC Horizon tv app voor live tv-kijken iPad verkrijgbaar". Totaal TV. Retrieved 23 November 2017.
  46. ^ "Twee vliegen in één klap: Horizon Go heet nu Ziggo GO en is ook beschikbaar voor Windows 10!". Ziggo. 9 November 2016. Retrieved 23 November 2017.
  47. ^ Robert Briel (28 September 2016). "HBO Netherlands pulls the plug, Ziggo gets the programmes". BroadbandTVNews.com.
  48. ^ Telecompaper: 2021 was glasvezelrecordjaar met 885.000 aangesloten huizen in NL
  49. ^ Olaf van Miltenburg (10 October 2019). "Ziggo start vanaf 15 oktober met 1Gbit/s in Utrecht voor 99,50 euro per maand" [Ziggo will start from October 15 with 1Gbit/s in Utrecht for 99.50 euros per month]. Tweakers (in Dutch).
  50. ^ "Klaar voor de toekomst met ons GigaNet Internetsnelheden tot wel 1 Gbit/s" [Ready for the future with our GigaNet internetspeeds up to 1 Gbit/s]. Ziggo.nl (in Dutch). 30 March 2022.
  51. ^ vodafoneziggo. "Resultaten tweede kwartaal: Groei mobiele en zakelijke diensten zet door" (in Dutch). vodafoneziggo. Retrieved 8 November 2022.
  52. ^ TotaalTV. "Ziggo levert standaard nieuwe supersnelle internetmodem: snelheidsverhoging in aantocht?" (in Dutch). TotaalTV. Retrieved 9 November 2022.
  53. ^ Sander Almekinders (18 April 2017). "Ziggo verkoopt geen eigen mobiele abonnementen meer" [Ziggo has stopped selling own mobile subscriptions] (in Dutch). TechZine.
  54. ^ Olaf van Miltenburg (28 July 2017). "Ziggo zet Ziggo Mobiel-klanten vanaf september over naar Vodafone" [Ziggo to transfer Ziggo Mobile customers to Vodafone in September]. Tweakers (in Dutch).
  55. ^ "VodafoneZiggo Group B.V. Annual Report December 31, 2020" (PDF). VodafoneZiggo Group B.V.
  56. ^ The figures in the table have been copied and calculated from the annual reports: https://www.libertyglobal.com/investors/vodafoneziggo-group-holding/
  57. ^ The number of connections concerns the so-called "homes passed", the number of households to which VodafoneZiggo can provide fixed services. Figures at the end of the calendar year.