It’s the time of year we all look forward to, that’s right, the annual release of the draft Telecommunications Development Levy liability allocation determination is upon us for 2020/2021!
This annual release tells the NZ public how much each telco is going to contribute towards the Government’s ongoing efforts to ensure high speed broadband is available to all New Zealanders.
But more interestingly for us, it also gives us a glimpse into how internet service providers are faring generally, and ultimately, how we are doing against the competition.
It is important to note that the numbers below do not represent revenue for the businesses listed, the dollar figures shown are essentially audited revenue minus whatever has been paid to the other entities on the list.
We have put together this table to highlight how the NZ telco scene has changed in the last 12 months.
Qualified Revenue ($) 2020
Qualified Revenue ($) 2021
Let’s talk growth rates
Lightwire was 4th highest in terms of growth rate in the last 12 months, with 22.2%. NOW and My Republic also had excellent growth rates, albeit off lower bases.
I initially looked at Kordia and was blown away by their growth, but then I saw that in a judgment issued last month, the High Court confirmed that, apart from free-to-air broadcasters and satellite providers operating outside New Zealand, businesses involved in broadcasting transmission can be liable to pay the TDL. The result is that Sky TV is now liable to contribute to the TDL for the first time and Kordia will pay a higher share than previous years. Despite this, I am sure Kordia has experienced significant growth, just not quite the level these numbers indicate.
Excluding the fibre carriers and just looking at the ISPs in the list, it really was Lightwire, NOW, My Republic and 2degrees that led the way, especially when compared to an industry average growth rate of 3.5%.
Who was new to the list?
Welcome to Devoli and Inspire Net, two ISPs that have cracked into the list for the first time this year through continued organic growth. No surprise to see either of them in the list, both great companies building into solid niches.
Sky and Todd have also been added to the list, Sky due to the same ruling that saw Kordia’s obligations increase, and Todd through its interests in Nova Energy, Total Consumer Services and Todd Digital.
Great result in a tough year
Last year we were super happy to make the list based on 20% growth over the preceding 12 month period. To match that growth rate two years running through organic growth and to have that rate of growth exceed the industry average by so much, well, it just goes to show what a great team we have, how much trust we have from our amazing partners, and that despite a pretty rubbish year we have managed to keep our hands on the wheel and get ahead.
Thanks to our people and partners for giving me this positive news to share. I don’t want to jinx it, but I am confident we can make it three years running of 20% (or more) growth.