Mumbai: Network18 Media & Investments Limited today announced its results for the quarter ended 30th September, 2017.
Network18 posted consolidated revenues of Rs. 866 crores (including proportionate share of JVs) in Q2FY18, a 2% YoY growth, as growth in its broadcasting business was partially offset by a decline in revenues in the TV shopping business. However, a reduction in costs across both these verticals resulted in substantially lower losses.
Highlights for the quarter
- The quarter witnessed muted ad-revenues due to a pullback by advertisers: The deferment of ad-spends which started in mid-June continued to hurt during till mid-September. Since then, green shoots have been visible and the growth trajectory is recovering, driven by the festive season. We believe that bottlenecks in GST implementation shall ease in due course; and the GST regime shall push the formal economy in the long run, boosting ad-spends.
- Listed subsidiary TV18 posted 4% revenue growth (including JVs): Entertainment business registered revenue growth even in an adverse environment, driven by rising strength of our bouquet of properties. National News revenue growth was constrained by softness in ad-spends due to macro-pressures. Regional news continued to witness weak revenues as a result of lower government and election-related advertising versus last year, dragging the bottomline.
- TV18 share of News viewership continued its uptrend, reaching 9.3% this quarter vs <5% in Q1FY17: Our regional cluster is now #1 in reach, and is a prime contributor to news portfolio viewership rising. Increasing traction of our revamped Hindi News channel has also helped. Our Business News channels continued their dominance in the genre, with an overall 66% share across Hindi and English.
- Viacom18’s share of entertainment viewership (ex-sports) stayed stable at ~10%. Niche channels like Nick, Comedy Central and VH1 put in a strong show, driving advertising revenues in an otherwise adverse environment. Colors and Rishtey were in the top two in Urban and rural Hindi markets respectively. Viacom18’s social-message led movie ‘Toilet – Ek Prem Katha’ became the top grosser of the year.
- Consolidating on FY17 launches: All TV channels launched last year are well on their way to reducing their operating losses. Amongst these, Rishtey Cineplex and MTV Beats are ahead of the curve driven by overall growth in FTA and traction of Bollywood content, and Colors Super and News18 Tamil too have made rapid strides. VOOT continues to see growing traction with 40mn+ downloads, and has been awarded for innovations like its progressive web-app.
- Digital properties continue their ascent on the traffic charts; uptick in revenues too: The management has consciously focused on engaging categories like Cricket, apart from providing timely and cutting edge news and analysis; and our portfolio has seen the benefits across the board. Network18’s digital revenues (mainly MoneyControl, News18.com and Firstpost) have grown 19% YoY to Rs 31 Cr. The digital industry continues to face challenges in monetization despite traffic growth, stemming from increase in inventories due to launch of multiple platforms and a shift of traffic growth towards mobile where screen real-estate is limited.
- HomeShop18 focusing on profitability, combines with ShopCJ to get scale benefits: The board of directors approved a combination of HomeShop18 with another leading TV shopping platform ShopCJ; to improve their standing in the competitive digital commerce space.
Mr. Adil Zainulbhai, Chairman of Network18, said: “With the various digital ventures in our fold, we are well positioned as the digital ecosystem grows. We are taking active steps to position each digital property so that it can expand and be successful”
Financials for the quarter
Consolidated Revenue (including proportionate share of Joint Ventures considered for segment reports) for the quarter ended 30th September, 2017 stood at Rs. 866 crores vs. Rs. 853 crores in the corresponding quarter last year.
Segment Operating EBITDA on a consolidated basis, including the performance of Joint ventures for the quarter ended 30th September, 2017, stood at Rs. (38) crores vs Rs. (58) crores in the corresponding quarter last year.
Consolidated Revenue as per Ind AS (accounting the JVs under Equity method) for the quarter ended 30th September, 2017 stood at Rs. 327 crores as compared to Rs. 379 crores in the corresponding quarter last year.
Operating EBITDA on a consolidated basis under Ind AS for the quarter ended 30th September, 2017 stood at Rs. (34) crores, vs Rs. (72) crores in the corresponding quarter last year.