Network18 Media & Investments Limited on Wednesday announced its results for the quarter and year ended March 31, 2017.
Network18 posted consolidated revenues of Rs 3,471 crore (including proportionate share of JVs) in FY17 a 5% YoY growth, driven largely by its TV operations. Segment profits were significantly impacted by pullback in advertising spends in the latter half, operating losses of the new initiatives in regional and digital broadcasting, and losses in digital commerce businesses.
Highlights for the quarter:
- Tepid ad-industry environment dragged revenues, especially in regional markets. The media industry is still facing impact of deferment of advertising spends that kicked-in from November-December 2016 on likely slow-down in consumer spending. Further, the revival of advertising spends has been witnessed at a much faster clip for national channels, while regional markets are still recovering with a lag. This has been exacerbated by our launches of regional news and entertainment channels over the last 18 months, including 4 in early-FY17.
- Despite headwinds, Network18’s consolidated topline (including JVs) was flat YoY. Listed subsidiary TV18 posted 7% YoY topline growth and its operating profits excluding impact of new initiatives was Rs. 92.6 crores (vs. Rs. 96.7 crores in Q4 FY17).
- Viewership around key events demonstrated their News franchise leadership and excellence of coverage. CNBC TV18, during the live coverage and analysis of the Union Budget on 1st Feb 2017, garnered 86% market share. On Counting Day of the Assembly Elections of 5 states, CNN News18 was the #1 English News channel.
- Viacom18 continues to showcase its strength in Hindi General Entertainment, Regional entertainment and Kids genres. Colors is now a strong #2 channel, while Nick and Sonic together place us as the top Kids content provider today with a ~29% market-share.
- Amidst a challenging market environment, the group continued to focus on scaling up its digital platforms. OTT entertainment app VOOT continues to gain traction, and we are witnessing more sticky usage patterns than competition. Opinions website “Firstpost” and flagship finance portal “MoneyControl” were standout performers, and have posted impressive growth in traffic.
- HomeShop18 has contributed substantially to the weakness in Network18 profitability. The TV home-shopping business continues to face challenges due to a hit to cash-on-delivery payments and a poor spending appetite since November, competition from e-commerce and regulatory issues including imposition of entry tax by several states. The management is taking steps to cut costs and accelerate operating break-even.
Adil Zainulbhai, Chairman of Network18, said, “The digital space in India continues to become more and more vibrant, as bottlenecks around connectivity and cost reduce substantially. We see the emergence of new formats and services, and rapidly-evolving business models; and aim to be at the forefront of this change. Our strength in linear media provides us the edge, helping us leapfrog in our aspiration to be a channel-agnostic provider of top-drawer content.”
Financials for the quarter:
The consolidated Revenue (including proportionate share of Joint Ventures considered for segment reports) for the quarter ended March 31, 2017 stood at Rs 898.4 crore vs. Rs 898.8 crore in the corresponding quarter last year. The FY17 consolidated revenue stood at Rs 3471.1 crore, up 5% from Rs 3321 crore last year.
Segment loss before Interest and Tax on a consolidated basis, including the performance of Joint ventures for the quarter ended March 31, 2017, stood at Rs 65.5 crore vs segment profit of Rs 65.3 crore in the corresponding quarter last year. Excluding the impact of new initiatives and one-time expenses, the Segment profit for the quarter is Rs 5 crore.
The consolidated Revenue as per Ind AS (accounting the JVs under Equity method) for the quarter ended March 31, 2017 stood at Rs 387.7 crore as compared to Rs 473.2 crore in the corresponding quarter last year. The FY17 consolidated Ind-AS revenue stood at Rs 1491.0 crore, down 2% from Rs 1527.3 crore last year.
Operating loss on a consolidated basis under Ind AS for the quarter ended March 31, 2017 stood at Rs 20.7 crore, vs segment profit Rs 82.7 crore in the corresponding quarter last year. Excluding the impact of new initiatives and one-time expenses, the operating profit for the quarter is Rs 55.2 crore.
New initiatives and one-time charges
1. The new initiatives of Viacom18 (2nd Kannada GEC Colors Super, OTT video destination VOOT and movie channel Rishtey Cineplex) continued to perform well on all operational metrics. The aggregate operating loss of the new initiatives considered in the consolidated segment results for the quarter is Rs. 36.1 crores.
2. Three regional news channels -- News18 Kerala, News18 Tamil Nadu and News18 Assam/N.E -- that were launched during the first quarter of the current year incurred an operating loss of Rs. 26.9 crores during the quarter
3. “fyi TV18”, a lifestyle programming channel from the AETN18 stable (a JV between TV18 and A&E Network), commercially launched in July 2016, gained a market share of 21% in the quarter. The channel incurred an operating loss of Rs. 7.6 crore during the quarter
Network18 - Television Operations
Network18’s listed subsidiary TV18 owns and operates the largest network of channels – 47 in India spanning news and entertainment. In addition to this, we also cater to the global Indian diaspora through 11 international channels.
News – National & Regional
- CNBC TV18 maintained #1 rank in the English Business News genre with 58% market share in Q4 16-17. During market hours (Weekdays, 8 AM to 4 PM) its lead over rivals was even higher with a market share of 65%. [Source: BARC, All India, NCCS AB Males 22+, 1st January to 31st March 2017]
- CNBC TV18, during the live coverage and analysis of the Union Budget on 1st Feb 2017, garnered 86% market share. It maintained its phenomenal performance throughout the week, taking 79% market share in Week 5’2017 - the highest in a given week for any English Business News channel since the introduction of the new measurement universe in Oct 2015. [Source: BARC, All India, NCCS AB Males 22+, Week 5, 2017]
- CNBC Awaaz continues to be dominant in the Hindi Business News genre with 59% market share. [Source: BARC, HSM, NCCS AB Males 22+, 1st January to 31st March 2017]
- On Budget day, Flagship English Language news channel CNN News18 was a clear leader in Mega Cities with 29% market share (Source: BARC India, TG: NCCS AB Male 22+, Market: Mega Cities, Period: 01st Feb’17, 24 Hrs)
- On Counting Day of the Assembly Elections, CNN News18 was the #1 English News channel (Source: BARC India, TG: NCCS AB Male 22+, Market: UP/Uttarakhand & Pun / Har / Cha / HP / J&K, Period: 11th Mar’17, 0600-2400 Hrs)
- News18 India garnered a Market Share of 8.7% in Q4 16-17 in HSM, up from 7.2% in Q3 16-17 and 5.9% in Q4 15-16 [Source: BARC, HSM, NCCS 15+, (Q4 15-16: 1st January 2016 to 31st March 2016), (Q3 1617: 1st October 2016 to 31st December 2016), (Q4 16-17: 1st January 2017 to 31st March 2017)]
- In Mega Prime Time, post its content refresh in Q3 16-17, News18 India continues to grow, fetching a slot Market Share of 11.1% in Q4 16-17, higher than the previous quarter of revamp (Q3 16-17 - 10.1%), and the quarter prior to revamp (Q2 16-17 – 7.1%) [Source: BARC, HSM, NCCS 15+, (Q2 16-17: 1st July 2016 to 31st September 2016), (Q3 1617: 1st October 2016 to 31st December 2016), (Q4 16-17: 1st January 2017 to 31st March 2017), 1900-2230, Weekdays]
- With a slot share of 11.1% , News18 India was amongst the Top 5 Hindi News channels in Mega Prime Time in Q4 16-17 [Source: BARC, HSM, NCCS 15+, (Q4 16-17: 1st January 2017 to 31st March 2017), 19002230, Weekdays]
- IBN Lokmat garnered a Market Share of 17.2% in Q4 16-17 in Mah/Goa, up from 16.0% in Q3 16-17 and 16.9% in Q4 15-16 [Source: BARC, Mah/Goa, NCCS 15+, (Q4 15-16: 1st January 2016 to 31st March 2016), (Q3 16-17: 1st October 2016 to 31st December 2016), (Q4 16-17: 1st January 2017 to 31st March 2017)]
- ETV regional news cluster has improved its viewership substantially over the past quarter. We have re-launched 6 channels in the last 3 months under the News18 brand. Our overall viewership share (as ratio of overall news viewing in the country) has more than doubled to 4% from 1.8% between January 2017 and March 2017. ETV Rajasthan and ETV UP/Uttarakhand saw a strong jump in market share (nearly 3x). [Source: BARC TG: 15+ Markets: Individual Genre Markets, All India for Urdu)]
Infotainment – Factual entertainment & Lifestyle
- History TV18 garnered 15% market share in All India in Q4 among the 7 Factual Entertainment channels [Source: BARC, All India, NCCS AB 15+, 1st January to 31st March 2017]
- FYI TV18, a lifestyle programming channel launched in Q2 16-17 has garnered a 21% Market Share in Q4 16-17 in the Lifestyle genre. [Source: BARC, All India, NCCS AB 15+, 1st January to 31st March 2017]
Entertainment – National, Regional & Digital
- Colors continued its solid performance as a strong #2 channel with leadership in key primetime slots. Colors had 3 to 5 shows among Top 10 Fiction Shows in genre; ‘Naagin S2’ was #1 show at different points in time in the period. The quarter saw the successful launch of unique, high impact properties - Rising Star and Chote Miyan Dhakad. [BARC, 2+ HSM , All NCCS, Wk 10-13]
- Rishtey was the #2 free-to-air (FTA) channel and the #5 channel overall (Pay+FTA) in amongst GECs. [BARC, 2+ HSM , All NCCS, Wk 10-13]
- Rishtey Cineplex, the FTA movie channel launched in Q1FY17 was the #5 channel among comparables. It emerged as the #3 channel in Week 13. [Source: BARC, 2+ HSM , All NCCS, Wk 10-13]
- Nick continued its leadership in the Kids genre. Between Nick and Sonic, our Kids portfolio commanded a 29% market-share. Nick and Sonic each have 2 shows among Top 10 shows in the genre. [Source: BARC, TG: 2 – 14, NCCS ABC, Market: All India. Time Period: All days, 0700-2200 hrs, Wk 10-13]
- In English entertainment, VH1 and Colors Infinity occupied the top two spots in the genre; while Comedy Central is placed #4. [Source: BARC, TG: 15-40, 6 Mega Cities, NCCS AB, Wk 10-13]
- MTV has been the #2 channel in the Youth entertainment genre. [Source: BARC, TG: 15-21, All NCCS, Market: All India; Out of MTV, Zing, Zoom and Bindass Time Period: All days, 0200-2559 hrs, Wk 10-13]
- MTV Beats has emerged amongst Top 5 channels of a highly cluttered genre.
- VOOT, Viacom18’s Over The Top (OTT) exclusive digital video destination was commercially launched in May’16, and continues to gain traction. It was selected among ‘Top Trending’ and ‘Most Entertaining’ Apps of 2016 by Google Play Store. We continue to witness a strong growth in installs and active users. It is clocking a significant 40+ minutes of daily viewership. Current shows include library content and VOOT originals. VOOT Original series titled ‘Untagged’ won critical and commercial acclaim.
- Colors Kannada retained its strong #1 position in Kannada regional entertainment with a 29% market share. The channel has 5 out of the top 10 shows in the genre. Colors Super, our 2nd Kannada Regional GEC which was launched in July 2016, has achieved a 6% market share. [Source: BARC, 2+, All NCCS, Karnataka, Wk 10-13]
- Colors Marathi continued to be a strong #2 channel in the Marathi GE genre with an 18% market share. [Source: BARC, 2+, All NCCS, Mah, Goa, Wk 10-13]
- Live events - Successful fourth edition of Vh1 Supersonic in February 2017 achieved 10 Mn+ views on Facebook, coupled with 1.1Mn+ strong online community
Network18 - Digital
- Moneycontrol continues to be India’s leading finance and business platform for the 16th successive year, with ~7.3 million average unique visitors per month and 285 million+ average monthly page views on the website
- On engagement, Moneycontrol remains clearly ahead of competition, with users consuming ~1.7X more pages and spending ~1.7X more time compared to the competition. Also, the unique visitors across all platforms of Moneycontrol increased substantially
- Moneycontrol app continues to remain the best-in-class and has won multiple laurels. The Moneycontrol app achieved highest ever monthly screen views since launch. Moneycontrol was also applauded at the Mobile World Congress on becoming first of its kind to have an in-car app.
News18.com (erstwhile Ibnlive.com and Pradesh18.com)
- News18.com continue to grow in terms of traffic on mobile across unique views (29% growth vs. Q3) and pageviews (28% growth vs. Q3) despite the seasonal holiday dip. Even on desktop, News18.com has matched its earlier peak, in terms of page views.
- Pradesh18.com has been successfully merged under single brand name of News18.com. It intends to leverage the content from ETV regional news content from across 14 languages and the English News channel CNN News18
- News18.com’s fast and accurate coverage of the BMC elections, made it one of the most visited websites for the BMC election results coverage. Further, its investment in building new features categories like lifestyle, health & fitness, and travel, have received a positive response amongst both trade and audiences.
- Firstpost with its exceptional coverage of both the UP election results and the local BMC elections, recorded highest ever traffic, in terms of page views, on desktop and on mobile.
- Average monthly mobile UVs exhibited a growth of ~16% over the previous quarter. With its strong performance, Firstpost broke into the top 4 amongst its competitors in terms of unique visitors.
- This impressive performance was achieved on the basis of distinctive and speedy content delivered. Firstpost continues to rank among the top 3 search results on Google & Google News. Firstpost was amongst the top 4 for search traffic on UP elections result related keywords and amongst the top 2 publishers for BMC election related keywords.
- BookMyShow continued its stellar performance in line with previous quarter, as over 4 million apps have been installed.
- BMS has been appointed as the Exclusive online Ticketing partner for the prestigious “Justin Bieber- the Purpose World Tour in India” to be held on 10th May, 2017 at Mumbai - Justin Beiber’s first ever event in India. Further BMS marked its foray into Government tourism ticketing with “Surajkund Mela” at Faridabad. Also For the first time BMS will be managing the ticketing for Team KKR in IPL Season 10 of 2017.
- Bookmyshow Indonesia business has continued its momentum similar to that of previous quarter.
- Competitive intensity in the business has risen substantially over FY17.
- The acceptance and popularity of the channel continued to grow as the Cumulative Customer base crossed 21.5 million vs 17.9 million in Q4’16 and 20.6 million in Q3‘17.
- The TV home-shopping business continues to face challenges due to a hit to cash-on-delivery payments and a poor spending appetite since November, competition from e-commerce and regulatory issues including imposition of entry tax by several states. The management is taking steps to cut costs and accelerate operating break-even.
- Shipping charges acceptance has been quite good and recovery further increased to 8.6% vs 4.7% in the Q4’16 and 6.9% in Q3 ‘17.
Network 18 - Print
- Under its publishing division, Network18 operates 3 leading brands -‘Overdrive’, ‘Better Photography’ and ‘Better Interiors’.
- In Q4, Better Photography conducted awards for two of the largest genres of photography in India i.e. wedding & wildlife through the Wedding Photographer of the year in its sixth edition and the inaugural Wildlife photography awards and a unique annual coffee table book showcasing the best work in Indian Wildlife. Also through the quarter OVERDRIVE has built up a new web site for itself as part of the Digital first approach and also initiated discussion for content push through alliances and content syndication.
- Three Special editions of the magazine were published this quarter, namely : a) “India’s Family Managed Businesses”, which features business families and their enterprises and curated their stories to demonstrate how family concerns operate in India
b) “W Power Trailblazers”, wherein a selection of women was presented who have been disruptive, influential and successful in their respective fields.
c) “Investment Special”, showcasing best and brightest names from the markets, from different asset classes, to provide the reader with a definitive investment guide
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