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Eros Now aims to accelerate subs addition within millennial, post-millennial audiences

Eros released 25 films and 3 Eros Now original series in Q3 2019.

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BENGALURU: The Sunil Lulla-led Eros International Media Ltd (Eros) reported higher revenues on more film releases and a slight decline in profit after tax for the quarter ended 31 December 2018 (Q3 2019, quarter or period under review) as compared to the corresponding year ago quarter (Q3 2018). 

Eros released 25 films and 3 Eros Now original series in Q3 2019 as compared to just four films in Q3 2018. Twenty three of the releases in Q3 2019 were small budget, while two were medium budget films as compared to four small budget films in Q3 2018. Further, in Q3 2019, six of the releases were Hindi, two were Tamil/Telugu and the rest (17) were regional films. In Q3 2018, Eros released three Hindi movies and one regional movie.

Eros’s revenue streams have undergone a marked shift in contributions to overall revenue over time. The percentage of theatrical revenues has come down, while television plus others and overseas has gone up.  For fiscal 2018 (year ended 31 March 2018, FY 2018), Eros had reported 42.8 percent of revenue from theatrical releases, 46.3 percent revenue share from television and others which included revenue from digital platforms and 10.9 percent from overseas.  For Q3 2019, the company has reported 24.6 percent, 52.4 percent and 23 percent contributions from theatrical releases, television and others, and overseas respectively.

Eros has projected rapid growth in paid subscribers for its digital platform ErosNow at the end of fiscal 2019 (year ending 31 March 2019) at 16 plus million as compared to 13 million at the end of Q2 2019. The company is banking on its long standing and exclusive partnerships with major Indian telecom and mobile data players – Jio, Airtel and the merged Vodafone-Idea to add more paid subscribers to ErosNow.

Company speak

Eros executive vice chairman and MD Lulla said, “We are pleased to announce strong results during the quarter, delivering 62.1 percent total income growth and consistent profits. Our focused approach of choosing a balanced slate spanning genres, languages and budgets, continues to deliver positive results. During the quarter, we released a total of 25 films and three digital series, comprising of an interesting mix of genres ranging from comedy to horror and crime thriller, which received encouraging responses. The theatrical slate included the critically acclaimed Tumbbad, Boyz 2 (Marathi), Mumbai Pune Mumbai 3 (Marathi) and our twin Telugu releases Amar Akbar Anthony and Savyasachi amongst others. A strong slate of overseas releases of Andhadhun (Hindi), Helicopter Eela (Hindi) and Namaste England (Hindi) further supported performance during the quarter.

"In this quarter, we released three original web series – the crime thriller Smoke, the entertaining and quirky Date Gone Wrong and the fun-series Paisa Fek Tamasha Dekh on ErosNow, which received positive audience ratings and were equally applauded by the critics. We are committed to bring fresh and engaging digital content targeted primarily to the millennial audiences on the ErosNow platform, and have an exciting pipeline of original content lined up for the upcoming quarters. We are confident with our exciting content offering the pace of subscriber addition for ErosNow will further aaccelerate

"As we look ahead, we have a compelling film slate which includes Saif Ali Khan starrer Kaptan, the trilingual remake of Haathi mere Saath, Kaamiyab, Ticket to Bollywood, and a host of regional releases. In addition, we have a host of remarkable originals such as Dashavtar, Ponnyin Selvan, Flesh, Bhumi coming up on ErosNow, that we look forward to releasing in the upcoming quarters.”

Let us look at the numbers reported by Eros

Eros reported a 52.9 percent jump in operating revenue for the quarter ended 31 December 2018 (Q3 2019, period or quarter under review) at Rs 292.88 crore as compared to Rs 193.51 crore in the corresponding year ago quarter (y-o-y comparison). Profit after tax (PAT) and total comprehensive income (TCI) for the period under review fell 7.4 percent and 58.9 percent (more than respectively) respectively y-o-y. Total income increased 62.2 percent y-o-y in Q3 2019 to Rs 332.28 crore as compared to Rs 201.97 crore in Q3 2018. PAT in Q3 2019 was Rs 62.19 crore as compared to Rs 67.16 crore in Q3 2018. TCI in Q3 2019 was Rs 23.06 crore as compared to Rs 56.16 crore in Q3 2018.

Eros reported 107.9 percent y-o-y increase in total expenditure in Q3 2019 at Rs 255.42 crore from Rs 122.86 crore in Q3 2018. Films rights costs including amortisation costs increased 101.3 percent y-o-y to Rs 145.51 crore from Rs 72.30 crore in the corresponding quarter of the previous fiscal. Employee benefits expense in Q3 2019 declined 11.2 percent y-o-y to Rs 12.56 crore from Rs 14.14 crore in Q3 2018.

Finance costs reduced 13 percent y-o-y in Q3 2019 to Rs 15.95 crore from Rs 18.33 crore in the previous year’s corresponding quarter. Other expenses in the quarter under review more that quintupled (increased by 402.2 percent) y-o-y in Q3 2019 to Rs 77.54 crore from Rs 15.44 crore in Q3 2018.

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