Network18 is reorganising the business broadcast operation of its group company TV18. Television18 runs CNBC TV18 and CNBC Awaaz. The decision to merge the logistics, back-end and broadcast and operations of the two channels coincides with the completion of 10 years of CNBC TV18 and five years of CNBC Awaaz as standalone operations.
The company expects to optimise approximately 20 per cent in annual operating costs via this restructuring. This move follows the commitment under the TV18 rights offer to shareholders, viz. the payment of more that Rs 300 crore of debt. The savings on interest and operational costs will lead to total reduction of approximately Rs 65 crore in annual cost.
The restructuring will also create the country largest business news infrastructure spread across eight business bureaus and two broadcast hubs – Mumbai and Delhi. This move will realise significant cost synergies between the operations and about 12 per cent positions in the company would be rendered surplus.
In a prepared statement, Haresh Chawla, Group CEO, Network18, said, “CNBC TV18 and CNBC Awaaz have independently carved out a loyal niche for themselves and are undisputed leaders in the English and Hindi business news spaces. The two channels command a lion’s share of the business news category, despite the onslaught of new offerings in the space. It is our belief that the next stage of growth and profitability of our business news operations will come from a more synergistic entity that combines the strength of two powerful and complementary brands. TV18 has already embarked on a path to financial restructuring as mentioned in the rights issue offer. Both these moves put together will make TV18 more robust in operating as well as financial terms.”