Television

Zee News Ltd posts 19.5% ad rev growth in shaky environment

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MUMBAI: Zee News Ltd (ZNL) has posted second-quarter advertising revenue growth of 19.5 per cent but has cautioned that the economic environment is still shaky and could turn worse after the festive spending is over.

The television news broadcasting company‘s ad revenue for the three-month period ended September stood at Rs 486.5 million compared to Rs 407.2 million a year ago, constituting 61.5 per cent of its total revenue.  

     

  "Given the current market conditions, we have done well. News channels had a dismal second quarter last year and this time the festive season has advanced. Going forward, the ad scenario looks bleak. But we are preparing ourselves for the impending recession and will come out with innovative solutions. Even during the thick of the recession in 2008, we did better than the industry. We expect to outgrow the market by 5-10 per cent," Zee News Ltd chief executive officer Barun Das told Indiantelevision.com.

ZNL‘s subscription revenue has de-grown during the quarter due to the transition to Media Pro, a distribution company formed by Star Den and Zee Turner, but would look up in the subsequent quarters. Pay-TV revenues stood at Rs 160.1 million, down 17.5 per cent from the year-ago quarter.

"The subscription revenue figures showed degrowth as they have been booked net of expenses. This change has been necessitated due to the formation of Media Pro, which pays subscription revenues to Zee, net of expenses. But as things settle down, we should be seeing a growth of 10 per cent in our subscription income," Das averred. 

Consolidated net profit stood at Rs 34.82 million compared to Rs 2.24 million a year ago.

Ebitda was at Rs 85.1 million, up 21.2 per cent from Rs 70.2 million.

ZNL‘s revenue jumped 28.5 per cent to Rs 791.3 million. This included a one-time transaction of sale of programmes and film rights from Zee Tamil to Zee Wntertainment Enterprises Ltd (Zeel) of Rs 124.2 million. Without this, ZNL‘s revenue would have grown by eight per cent over the year-ago period.



"The sale will also be captured in the next two quarters of the fiscal," said Das.

Operating expenses rose 29.4 per cent to Rs 706.2 million. ZNL said that subsequent to Zee Tamil discontinuance, the company transferred part of inventory of programmes and films related to Zee Tamil. Accordingly, Other Sales & Services as well as Cost of Goods & Operations are higher by this amount.

The existing news channels (Zee News, Zee Business, Zee 24 Taas, Zee Punjabi and 24 Ghanta) reported Ebitda of Rs 146 million, while Ebitda loss from the new channels was at Rs 60.9 million.

  

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