Cable TV

Topline improves for Hathway in Q1-2017, but bottomline impacted

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MUMBAI: The slow progress of DAS is continuing to prove painful for multisystem operator Hathway Cable & Datacom. Especially if one goes by the results it has reported for Q1 FY 2017 ended 30 June 2016.

Ballooning pay channel costs of Rs 102.05 crore, service charges of Rs 34.59 crore, depreciation and amortization expenses of Rs 70.37 crore and higher employee benefit expenses of Rs 22.72 crore have resulted in it reporting an operating loss of Rs 25.88 crore. The comparative figures for the previous corresponding quarter were Rs 78.56 crore, Rs 25.94 crore, Rs 59.19 crore Rs17.60 crore had dragged its bottomline down to the tune of Rs 18.11 crore.

Its topline, has however, shown some healthy improvement at Rs 301 crore in Q1 2017 as against Rs 257.44 crore in Q1 2016.

Its finance costs seem to have risen too at Rs 29.75 crore as against Rs 21.36 crore in the previous corresponding quarter of FY 2016. The outcome: its net loss has shot up to Rs 52.86 crore as against Rs 36.99 crore.

The company says that the hold up of the DAS Phase III rollout has impacted its monetization of the infrastructure investments it had made in some of the cities which came under those areas in preparation of the deadline of 31 December 2015.

Hathway has also stated that it is facing resistance from cable operators who are refusing to sign inter-connect agreements despite orders from the Telecom Regulatory Authority to do so in notified cities.

The company has got board approval to transfer its broadband business to a wholly owned subsidiary Hathway Broadband Pvt Ltd (HBPL) as of 1 April 2015. But this will be dependent on approval from the shareholders, and permission from the Bombay High Court and department of telecommunications (DoT). It says it has got approvals from the relevant stock exchanges, and it has approached the Bombay High Court.

Until it gets the approval, Hathway Cable will continue to operate the broadband business on behalf of HBPL and will receive a payment of Rs 98.05 crore in cash but the amount will not be reflected in its financial statements, the company stated.

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