Hathway EBITDA more than triples in Q1-2014 as compared to Q1-2013

BENGALURU: Indian Multi Systems Operator (MSO) Hathway Cable & Datacom Limited (Hathway) reported EBITDA (including other income) of Rs 77.04 crore for Q1-2014, more than three times (3.23 times) the Rs 23.84 crore for Q1-2013, but 14 per cent lower than the EBITDA of Rs 88.47 crore for Q4-2013.

NOTE: As per Hathway management's estimates, EBITDA inclusive of Hathway's economic interest in the EBITDA of its several subsidiaries/JVs/associate companies would aggregate to about Rs 96.0 crore for Q1-2014.

Let us look at Hathway's other figures for Q1-2014

Hathway reported a total income from operations of Rs 232.65 crore in Q1-2014 which was 70.74 per cent higher than the Rs 132.26 crore in Q1-2013 and almost flat (just 0.64 per cent more) income as compared to the Rs 231.18 crore for Q4-2013.

Hathway's expense for Q1-2014 at Rs 156.56 crore was 39.14 per cent more than the Rs 112.42 crore for Q1-2013 and 9.7 per cent more than the Rs 142.71 crore for Q4-2013. Hathway's purchase of stock in trade in Q1-2014 at Rs 0.67 crore was one fifth (5.075 times less) the Rs 3.4 crore in Q1-2013 and only about 41 per cent of the Rs 1.63 crore for Q4-2013.

Staff cost of Rs 13.77 crore for Q1-2014 was 35.53 per cent higher than the Rs 10.16 crore in Q1-2013 and 31.02 per cent higher than the Rs 10.51 crore for Q4-2013.

Paycost of Rs 58.45 crore for Q1-2014 was 50.22 per cent more than the Rs 38.91 crore for Q1-2013 and 18.08 per cent more than the Rs 49.5 crore for Q4-2013.

Other expense at Rs 83.67 crore for Q1-2014 was 39.57 per cent more than the Rs 59.95 crore for the corresponding quarter of the previous year (Q1-2013) and 3.2 per cent more than the Rs 81.06 crore for the immediate preceding quarter (Q4-2013).

PAT for Q1-2014 at Rs 5.32 crore was however less than one fifth the PAT of Rs 28.27 crore for Q4-2013. In Q4-2013, Hathway had a foreign exchange gain of Rs 5.73 crore, while in Q1-2014; it had incurred a foreign exchange loss of Rs 8.32 crore. Finance cost at Rs 21.61 crore for Q1-2014 was 53.6 per cent more than the Rs 14.07 crore in Q4-2013 and 62 per cent more than the Rs 13.32 crore for Q1-2013.

For Q1-2013, Hathway had reported a loss of Rs (-15.87) crore. The foreign exchange loss incurred by Hathway in Q1-2013 was Rs 4.56 crore.

Hathway's income from operations mainly consists of subscription income from cable TV and broadband business, carriage and placement income, advertisement income, activation income from STB's and other operating income.

Hathway says that it continued to deploy STBs in Q1-2014 and as of June, 2013 along with its JV partners had cumulatively deployed over 0.7 crore STBs all over India and approximately 0.18 crore STBs in Q1-2014. The company says that it has deployed approximately 0.25 crore STBs in Phase I and approximately 0.41 crore STBs in Phase II areas till June 2013, which it says, makes it the biggest MSO in Phase I and II areas.

Hathway informs that it has adequate STBs in hand and continues to roll out its services in major Phase III and IV towns.

Hathway further says that as per MIB (Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India) reports cable television is clearly the preferred choice in Phase II cities also with a near 90 per cent share of digital STBs seeded after 15 February 2013 being seeded by cable MSOs.

In its broadband update Hathway states that the gross additions to its broadband subscriber base was around 27,000 for the Q1-2014. Hathway's cumulative subscriber base stood at approximately 4,24,000. As on end June 2013, the company says that it has tested its DOCSIS 3 technology for its broadband subscribers in certain cities. With DAS being successfully implemented Hathway expects to increase its broadband customer base with bundled schemes that it plans to offer shortly at competitive rates.

Hathway says that it is in the process of raising funds to the tune of Rs 149.8 crore from its promoters and new shareholders through preferential allotment. The shares of face value Rs10 each are to be issued at a premium of Rs 274 per share (adding up to Rs 284 per share).

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