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BBC warns over ?500m threat to British TV from Netflix and Amazon

Spending on British television programmes will plummet by ?500m a year over the next decade as tech giants Amazon, Apple and Netflix seek to dominate the living room, the director-general of the BBC has warned.
In a speech tomorrow Tony Hall will cite new research predicting that more than a fifth of funding for original homegrown programming will disappear as the advertising market declines and the BBC makes cuts after the latest licence fee settlement.
Lord Hall will claim that despite the popularity of subscription streaming services, the rise of Netflix and Amazon has not led to an increase in spending on British production. While Netflix made its royal drama The Crown here and Amazon ploughed hundreds of millions into The Grand Tour, overall spending is down and due to drop further, according to the BBC's forecasts.
Lord Hall will say: "The reality is that their investment decisions are likely to focus increasingly on a narrow range of very expensive, very high-end content – big bankers that they can rely on to have international appeal and attract large, global audiences.
“Even the most generous calculations suggest they are barely likely to make up half of the ?500m British content gap over the decade ahead. And a more realistic forecast points to substantially less.”
BBC warns over ?500m threat to British TV from Netflix and Amazon

The Crown cost a reported ?100m
His comments reflect mounting concern in the British television industry that the arrival of cash-rich global players threatens to damage sources of funding and swamp viewers with American-made programming. 
Lord Hall will say: "We have to face the reality that the British content we value and rely upon is under serious threat.”
Advertising-funded broadcasters such as ITV face a tougher advertising climate, both due to the economic cycle and the migration of viewers to streaming, especially younger audiences. While revenues have held up so far, pay-TV operators such as Sky will also find life tougher, according to the BBC research.
The BBC is making a controversial move into the commercial production market in an attempt to secure more funding. Its new production arm BBC Studios will compete for commissions from Netflix and Amazon, as well as UK broadcasters.
Lord Hall will say: "In the UK we often think of the BBC as a big player, but today the media market is truly global.  And in that vast solar system, we are tiny compared to the huge gas giants of the US. And every day they’re getting bigger. 
"That is why we must continue to innovate, back new ideas, and take creative risks. We will never simply compete on money alone. It is why the reinvention of the BBC for the modern age is so important.”
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