Pace moves past Motorola, Technicolor to claim top spot in global STB shipments

Set-top box maker Pace--which just a few years ago was in a tough financial spot and trailed badly in the market--has pushed past set-top biox rankingsMotorola in the set-top box market, shipping more digital boxes than any other manufacturer in the world in 2009, according to a new study.

According to a report released today from IMS Research, the company showed a year-over-year increase in worldwide shipments of 31 percent, moving it up from the third spot behind Motorola and Technicolor (formerly Thompson). It's share of STB shipments in 2009 was 7 percent. Motorola fell from a first-place share of 8.8 percent in 2008 to second place with 6.1 percent last year. Technicolor, which in 2008 was second in shipments with 7.5 percent, fell to third in 2009 with a share of 5.4 percent. Scientific Atlanta/Cisco maintained its fourth place spot, and increased its share of shipments to 3.9 percent in 2009 from 3.8 a year earlier. Humax was ranked fifth.

Overall, set-top box shipment grew 15.2 percent, IMS reported, attributing Motorola's ranking to its leadership in the cable sector; Technicolor continues to be strong because of its role in the satellite sector.

Pace, which delivers technology for the satellite, cable, IPTV and terrestrial platforms, has seen strong growth over the past three years and had a record year in 2009, building on its integration of the Philips set-top box division. The company has aggressively grown its STB technology, particularly HD, PVR and hybrid devices. It currently provided boxes for more than 100 of the world's pay TV operators.

IMS Research analyst and co-author of the study Rebecca Kurlak said Pace's strong showing was in part due to its 2007 acquisition of Philips' STB business, but also was "due to the company's continued organic growth."

"The Philips division, now Pace France, operates as a division that focuses on IP, DTT and linear TV services," she said. "This additional facility has allowed Pace's headquarters in England to remain focused on traditional TV platforms and NDS CAS clients."

For 2010, IMS Research expects Pace to remain in the top ranking position in 2010 due to its recent partnership announcements of HD roll outs for Benelux satellite operator M7 Group and Malaysian satellite operator ASTRO, in addition to its large contract agreements with DirecTV, UPC and Viasat.

"We have worked very hard to build a customer-centric organization, working closely with our partners and consistently delivering outstanding, innovative products," said Pace CEO Neil Gaydon. "Digital TV continues to evolve at a rapid pace as consumers drive demand... The Pace team is exceptionally well positioned to capitalize on this opportunity as we continue to bring new and innovative products to market faster than our competitors."

The IMS study, which provides analysis of STB shipments and revenues for 68 countries with TV households split by region, country, platform, operator, and digital penetration rate, breaks down STB shipments and revenues by SD/HD picture quality, 1-way/2-way data receiving, and by DVR functionality. The report will be published by the end of May 2010.

For more:
- see this release

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