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Q2-2016: Ortel YoY revenue up 24.6 percent, PAT more than doubles

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BENGALURU: The Bibhu Prasad Rath-headed regional cable television and broadband internet player Ortel Communications Ltd  (Ortel) has reported a 24.6 percent growth in revenue from operations (TIO) at Rs 45.79 crore as in the quarter ended 30 September 2015 (Q2-2016, current quarter) as compared to the Rs 36.74 crore in the corresponding year ago quarter. TIO in the current quarter was also higher by 12.8 percent as compared to the Rs 40.6 crore in the immediate trailing quarter. Ortel provides services in the Indian states of Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal,

Notes: 100,00,000 = 100 lakh = 10 million = 1 crore

The numbers mentioned in this report are standalone.

The company reported more than a doubling of PAT (up 2.3 times) to Rs 2.83 crore (5.9 percent margin) as compared to the Rs 1.23 crore (3 percent margin) in Q2-2015, and 15.9 percent more than the Rs 2.44 crore (5.7 percent margin) in the immediate trailing quarter.

Ortel President and CEO Rath said, “I am glad to report a strong operational and financial performance for the quarter ended   September 30, 2015. Performance during the quarter was driven by healthy addition in revenue generating units (RGUs) which stood at 571,834. We are witnessing encouraging traction to our LCO buyout strategy in emerging markets like Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, and I am confident that this would sustain going forward. Going forward, we would continue with our strategy of aggressive LCO buyouts across all our markets and diligently integrate the new  subscribers into Ortel’s last mile network. Healthy contribution from new RGUs along with ongoing focus on the high margin Broadband business would enable us to deliver strong financial performance in the forthcoming years.”

The company’s EBIDTA (TIO plus Depreciation and Amortisation plus Other Income plus Fixed assets written off minus Total Expenditure) increased 31.3 percent to Rs 17.29 crore (37.8 percent margin) in the current quarter as compared to the Rs 13.17 crore (35.8 percent margin) and increased 8.8 percent as compared to the Rs 15.89 crore (39.1 percent margin) in Q1-2016.

Ortel’s YoY RGUs grew 9.2 percent to 571,834 in Q2-2016 from 523,833 in Q2-2015 and increased 5.5 percent from 542,217 in Q1-2016.

Cable TV RGUs’ increased 9 percent in Q2-2016 to 508,171 from 466,305 in Q2-2015 and grew 5.6 percent from 481,317 in Q1-2016.

Ortel’s YoY primary digital cable RGUs grew 33.2 percent to 117,401 in Q2-2016 from 88,106 and grew QoQ to 4.5 percent from 112,296 in Q1-2016. Analogue cable RGUs’ increased to 330,739 from 322,175 in Q2-2015 and from 307,923 in Q1-2016. The company says that its Cable TV penetration stood at 23.7 percent and penetration in select 10 towns where company offers digital services stands at 71 percent.

Broadband customers grew 8.9 percent to 63,663 in the current quarter from 57,528 in Q2-2015 and grew 4.5 percent from 60,900 in Q1-2016.

The company has reported a slight drop in digital and analogue cable and broadband ARPUs’ in the current quarter. Digital cable ARPU in Q2-2016 was Rs 183 in Q2-2016; Rs 187 in Q2-2015 and Rs 185 in Q1-2016. Analogue cable ARPU in Q2-2016 was Rs 143; in Q2-2015 it was Rs 147 and in Q1-2016, it was Rs 144. Broadband ARPU in Q2-2016 was Rs 183, in Q2-2015, it was Rs 187 and in Q1-2016, it was Rs 185.

Cable Subscription, Connection and Channel carriage fees

The company’s cable subscription fees in Q2-2016 increased 4 percent to Rs 20.6 crore as compared to the Rs 19.8 crore in Q2-2015 and increased 3 percent as compared to the Rs 20 crore in Q1-2016. Connection fees declined to Rs 0.70 crore in the current quarter from Rs 1.1 crore in Q2-2015 and remained flat as compared to the Rs 0.7 crore in Q1-2015.Channel carriage fees in the current quarter increased 44.9 percent to Rs 9.7 crore from Rs 6.7 crore in Q2-2015 and increased 23.8 percent from Rs 7.8 crore in the immediate trailing quarter.

Let us look at the other numbers reported by Ortel

Total Expenditure in Q2-2016 increased 13.3 percent to Rs 38.72 crore as compared to Rs 34.17 crore in Q2-2015 and increased 12.5 percent as compared to the Rs 34.42 crore in the immediate trailing quarter.

The company’s Programming cost in the current quarter increased 7.2 percent to Rs 9.44 crore from Rs 8.81 crore in Q2-2015 and increased 5.9 percent from Rs 8.91 crore in Q1-2016.

Bandwidth cost in Q2-2016 increased 19.3 percent to Rs 1.92 crore from Rs 1.61 crore in Q2-2015 and increased 7.9 percent from Rs 1.78 crore in Q1-2016.

Employee Benefits Expense in the current quarter increased 45.5 percent to Rs 5.64 crore as compared to the Rs 3.88 crore in Q2-2015 and was 15.4 percent more than the Rs 4.89 crore in Q1-2016.

Last quarter, Ortel announced that it had introduced free broadband option for all Ortel Cable TV subscribers in the states of Odisha, West Bengal and Chhattisgarh as a complimentary special value added service in order to target to deeper penetrate into markets by making internet affordable. Ortel says that its offer includes a free data limit every month for a year. The subscriber will be charged a nominal amount after exceeding the free data usage for the month.

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