Post its Board meeting held in Singapore, Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (ZEEL) on January 14, 2011 reported its Q3 FY11 consolidated revenue of Rs 8,249 million, representing a 55 per cent growth over the corresponding period in the previous fiscal. The consolidated operating profit (EBITDA) for the quarter stood at Rs 2,242 million, while profit after tax before extraordinary items stood at Rs 1,554 million. The EBITDA margin for the quarter stood at 27.2 per cent.
Advertising revenues were Rs 4,398 million, whereas subscription revenues were Rs 2,818 million for the quarter ended December 31, 2010. While advertising revenues increased by 62 per cent, subscription revenues showed an increase of 14 per cent as compared to the corresponding period last fiscal. Subscription revenues from domestic DTH stood at Rs 821 million during this quarter, an increase of 30 per cent over Q3 FY10.
The numbers as published are after consolidating the financials of Taj TV Ltd. The numbers of the third quarter ended December 31, 2010 include financial results of the Regional General Entertainment Channel business (R-GEC) acquired from Zee News Ltd (ZNL). The R-GEC business was acquired w.e.f. January 1, 2010. 9X business undertaking of 9X Media Pvt Ltd and ETC Networks Ltd were also merged with the company w.e.f. March 31, 2010. Post the merger of ETC Networks Ltd with ZEEL, the entire education business undertaking of ZEEL was demerged into a new listed company, Zee Learn Ltd w.e.f. April 01, 2010. Hence, the numbers for this quarter are not comparable with those of the corresponding quarter last fiscal.
In a prepared statement, Subhash Chandra, Chairman, Zee Group, stated, “We are pleased to see continuing buoyancy in media spends in India. A rapid adoption of satellite based television services via DTH proves that consumers are opting for better digital technology. This augurs well for the television industry, both for content owners and for DTH industry. During the nine months ended December 2010, India added 9.6 million digital homes on DTH alone, and the DTH subscriber base has gone up to 30.6 million homes.”
Commenting on the third quarter results of the company, Chandra added, “While the competition has intensified in the Indian television segment, our performance remained steady across genres and across languages. Our investments in sports genre have continued during the quarter.”
Punit Goenka, Managing Director and CEO, ZEEL, commented, “The performance of Zee Network has been satisfactory on all parameters, despite intensified competition in the Hindi entertainment segment. During the quarter, our advertising revenues have grown by 62 per cent, and we have seen healthy growth in cable revenues. DTH revenues also continued to grow, reflecting a growing adoption of digital DTH services.”
Speaking on the regional television landscape, Goenka said, “We continue to see robust growth in the regional segment. While we continued to lead the Marathi genre strongly with 33 of the top 50 shows, we managed to gain market share in the Bangla genre from an average of 271 GRPs in the second quarter of this fiscal to an average of 383 GRPs during the current quarter.”
Elaborating on the sports business, Goenka added, “We had a sports heavy calendar during the quarter, including several soccer properties and multiple cricket properties showcased on our channels. It included the cricket matches played by South Africa versus Pakistan, Sri Lanka versus West Indies and India versus South Africa tests. This has resulted in an increase in our operating cost on account of sports.”