Cable TV

Zeel provisions for outstanding Siti Networks dues

ZEEL hopes that the cable TV network will also pay up old content payments.

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KOLKATA: The outstandings of Siti Networks and Dish TV has been one of the major concerns for Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (Zeel). While the DTH platform Dish TV is making payments on the line of the revised plan for recovering dues, Siti Networks has failed to play old subscription overdues.

During the Q2 earnings call of ZeeL, MD & CEO Punit Goenka said that the company has collected the receivables related to revenues in the first half of FY 21 from the cable network. But it has failed to pay subscription overdue in accordance with payment plan agreed earlier due to various challenges including Covid2019, the pressure to prioritise lender’s payments, Goenka added.

As Siti Networks has made payment for all content delivered during April-September, this cash and carry model will be continued going forward. But as it has failed to pay old outstandings, ZeeL has taken a provision of Rs 81.2 crore towards subscription receivable which was overdue. Goenka emphasised that the company has not written off any debt and it would make all endeavours to recover the dues.

“Further on account of accelerated payment grievance by some of the lenders due to delay in restructuring by Siti Networks and their failure to negotiate extended repayment plans, the company has provided for extra liability of Rs 97 crore as of 30 September 2020. The provisions have been taken as a provisional  measure and company will take necessary efforts s to recover this due,” Goenka commented.

On the other hand, Dish TV has been able to cope up with the new payment plan as its financial position has improved. The DTH operator is paying its monthly billing along with clearing a part of its arrears. Currently, Dish TV’s outstanding stands at Rs 4. 98 bn compared to Rs 5.84 bn at end of FY 20. Moreover, Goenka stated the company expects that Dish TV will accelerate payments leading to reduced arrears.

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