Zee Network net rises 2% to Rs 545 million

MUMBAI: Subhash Chandra's Zee Telefilms Ltd saw net profit for the network as a whole rise 2.4 per cent to Rs 545.50 million for the quarter ended 30 September, 2002, up from Rs 532.90 million in SQ-2001.

Riding on the back of increased subscription revenues, total income increased from Rs 2,478.60 million in SQ-2001 to Rs 2745.50 million in SQ-2002.

However, if we examine the performance of Zee Telefilms alone without its subsidiaries, the results have been extremely disappointing. There has been a 45.5 per cent drop in net profits to Rs 161.30 million from Rs 295.90 million for SQ-2001.

Income from sales & services has decreased from Rs 1046 million in SQ-2001 to Rs 880.30 million in SQ-2002. Other income is at Rs 186.70 million.

On the expenditure side, transmission and programming costs fell to Rs 409.1 million from Rs 502 million in SQ-2001. Staff costs were also down by about a third from Rs 93.1 million in SQ-2001 to Rs 64.2 million, indicating some significant downsizing has taken place. Other expenses however, went up more than two-fold from Rs 88 million to Rs 196.5 million.

The consolidated results presented a better picture though and were are as follows:

Ad revenues went up marginally from Rs 1406.2 million in SQ-2001 to Rs 1423.5 million. Subscription revenues saw the biggest jump from Rs 779.9 million to Rs 1211.2 million. Other sales and services, however saw a drop from Rs 292.5 million to Rs 110.8 million. This reduction in income on the other sales front could well be because 2001 saw the release of the blockbuster hit movie from the Zee stable, Gadar Ek Prem Katha, which added positively to the company's bottomline.

Zee issues outlook:
"Although advertising spends continue to remain lacklustre, Zee strategic programming initiatives are expected to help in maintain or improve its share of advertising revenues. However subscription revenues form the domestic as well as the international markets continue to grow at a healthy rate, which will provide an increasing broadbasing of revenue stream in the days ahead."

"We continue to face an extremely challenging environment but are reasonably confident of our ability to deliver value from our multi-pillar business model which we feel is best suited in the diversified Indian environment."

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