Television

Zee FY03 net down 10%; Q4 up 135%

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MUMBAI: Zee Telefilms Ltd has posted a net profit of Rs 325.7 million for the fourth quarter ended 31 March, 2003, 134.65 per cent higher compared to the net profit of Rs 138.8 million for the corresponding quarter in the previous fiscal.



The media major's total income has increased from Rs 1390.1 million in the March quarter of 2002 to Rs 1509.8 million in the March quarter of 2003.



Zee posted a net profit of Rs 874.9 million for 2003, which is 10.04 per cent lower compared to the net profit of Rs 972.6 million for the previous year. The company's total income has increased from Rs 4832.1 million in FY02 to Rs 4974.4 million in FY03.

 

 

HIGHLIGHTS

*Subscription revenue was Rs 1,318 million for the fourth quarter, an increase of 54 per cent compared to the corresponding quarter last year.

*Domestic subscription revenue was Rs 501 million, 39.6 per cent more than last year and 32.5 per cent higher than Q3.

*International subscription revenue has grown by 43 per cent over corresponding quarter last fiscal.

Financial analysts that indiantelevision.com spoke to said that the subscription revenues, especially from the international markets were encouraging.

*Term Debt in Zee Telefilms Limited reduced by Rs 1,130 million.

*Ad revenue was Rs 1,695 million, down 15.7 per cent from the corresponding previous quarter.



The analysts said that the ad revenue drop was not to the extent predicted by Zee officials in their guidelines.



Analysts were heartened by the fact that the transmission and programming costs had declined quarter on quarter. The company had also curbed employee-related costs (350 people were offloaded between September and March).



The effective tax rate on the company had reduced to 21 per cent as compared to 27 per cent in the earlier corresponding quarter.



In trading today, the Zee scrip closed at Rs 69.95 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, up 2.94 per cent from its previous close of Rs 67.95.



Zee's CMD Subhash Chandra was quoted by CNBC India as saying that the results are a clear reflection that viewers are responding to the company's programming initiatives. "Advertisers are also accepting that programming is working," he said.



Chandra also pointed out that ad-revenues have recovered in the last couple of quarters, with the World Cup being the sole exception. Though the company expects a challenging advertising environment next year, Chandra said, "But, as a network, we feel that we will have a growth on a YoY basis."



On the CAS rollout, Chandra said that there might be drop of 15-20 per cent in viewership consisting of those people who might not want to watch any pay channel.



CONSOLIDATED RESULTS:

The group has posted a net profit of Rs 539.3 million for the fourth quarter ended 31 March, 2003 as compared to the net profit of Rs 528.3 million for the corresponding quarter last fiscal. Total revenue has increased from Rs 3388.4 million in the March quarter of 2002 to Rs 3922.9 million in the March quarter of 2003.



The group has posted a net profit of Rs 2,270.3 million for FY-03 as compared to the net profit of Rs 1,946 million for FY-02. Total revenue, meanwhile, has increased from Rs 11,554.5 million in FY02 to Rs 12,765.9 million in FY03.



BUSINESS OUTLOOK

In an outlook issued to the BSE, Zee has said that the business environment continues to be challenging for advertising revenues for the next year, which is dependent on macro economic factors and business confidence of the major advertisers.



Zee remains confident of continued expansion in subscription revenues. The company does not anticipate any lasting impact of the Cricket World Cup on advertising revenues, which is evident in the few weeks since the culmination of the event.

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