Siti Networks is one of India’s largest MSO with a connected customer base of over 8.5 million and the deal will see two conventional competitors share infrastructure, heralding a new era of collaboration in the digital platforms space.
NXTDIGITAL, India’s only HITS platform, services over 5 million subscribers.
“With significant investments in technology, our HITS platform was designed to facilitate MSOs deliver digital content across India,” said Vynsley Fernandes, MD & CEO at NXTDIGITAL.
The deal will allow Siti Networks to deliver their services in markets where conventional connectivity remains a challenge. NXT will earn a service fee from Siti for sharing its pan-India satellite delivery infrastructure.
“Our HITS PaaS (Platform-as-a-Service) solution, in line with the Government’s support for our industry, is the right step in this direction, helping MSOs save on connectivity costs whilst improving their quality of service; and we are sure this tie-up with Siti will be a landmark moment in the industry,” Fernandes added.
The potential market for such PaaS or infrastructure sharing services in India is estimated at over 60 million cable TV subscribers; connected to around 1,000 MSOs – largely independent or regional players, who often face such cost, connectivity and quality challenges.
“Siti has been focusing on enhancing its operational efficiencies. With the Government approving Infrastructure sharing in our domain, this tie-up with NXTDIGITAL is a natural progression and helps us overcome the difficulties of a terrestrial network in some markets through the HITS approach,” said Anil Malhotra, CEO of SITI Networks.
The move is in line with Siti’s strategy of enhancing its operational efficiencies and providing high up-time and quality services to its customers across the country. Financially, this move will help Siti control its connectivity costs and deliver uninterrupted services to existing and new markets.
“Operational efficiencies, along with uninterrupted services, will help improve our customer experience. Both Siti and NXTDIGITAL have integrated the HITS infrastructure with SITI’s existing Subscriber Management and Conditional Access systems while ensuring that the existing Capex is better sweated. Both teams have ensured all necessary testing and compliances. We do believe that evaluation of more such Infrastructure sharing options forms an integral part of the Government’s Digital India Strategy and would help in the spread of other services like Broadband to the last mile faster,” Malhotra added.
SITI will leverage the HITS infrastructure to deliver its signals to its local cable operators (LCOs), thus providing its services to semi-urban and rural subscribers while also expanding its footprint across the country through satellite.
NXT can facilitate digital services in the most remote areas – with services extending to the Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep Islands, the far north-eastern reaches of India, through to Kargil, Ladakh and Jammu & Kashmir.
Through the PaaS model, NXT expects to see MSOs faced with challenges of rising connectivity costs and quality – transition to a robust and independent sustainable model with better quality of service.