Sri Adhikari Brothers: Is the tide turning?

The tide it seems is turning for Sri Adhikari Brothers Television Network Ltd (SABTNL). In the latest results for Q3 (upto 31 December 2001), the company has declared a better net profit despite lower sales (as compared to Q2 2001). Net profit for Q3 is up 240 per cent to Rs 25.02 million (Rs 7.4 million in Q2 2001), while income from operations is down to Rs 179.3 million (Rs 224.3 million). 

The company seems to be keeping a tight rein on costs as its interest burden has stayed put at around Rs 3 million. Expenses are down by 17 per cent to Rs 154.7 million (Rs 185.9 million) and its profit before depreciation is higher at Rs 29.9 million (Rs 21.1 million). The company has provided a lower level of tax at Rs 1.8 million (Rs 10.7 million). has chosen to use Q2 vs Q3 as a comparative yardstick because satellite television is an extremely vibrant and fluid medium. If we compare the current quarter results with last year's corresponding quarter the performance seems pretty depressing. Total income in that quarter was Rs 275.6 million (Q3 2001 income: Rs 187.6 million), while net profit was Rs 43.3 million (RS 25.02 million).

The company says it is taking over the operations of Sabe TV during Q4, which will result in cost savings and thus help shoring up its balance-sheet in the future. Additionally, it is also hoping to uplink from within Indian shores thus attracting local advertisers who could not use it as a media vehicle because of forex restrictions, the management adds. The management says that net earnings from sponsored programmes on DD are up 230 per cent as compared to previous years.

The market reacted cautiously to the SABTNL's results, with the share opening at Rs 158 and oscillated between RS 158 and Rs 168, finally closing at Rs 160, an appreciation of one per cent. The share has been on an upward trend from 1 January when it was priced at Rs 133. 

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