Broadcast industry hopeful of good Q1; expects 13-14% growth

Industry experts feel that it has been a good quarter compared to last year, thanks to IPL and FIFA World Cup

e4m by Sonam Saini
Updated: Jul 3, 2018 9:00 AM

While there is still some time before the Q1 FY19 results of the broadcast sector will be officially out, there is a positive sentiment in the industry about the numbers and experts feel that it has been a good quarter compared to last year, thanks to IPL and FIFA World Cup. The industry is looking forward to healthy growth and stable margins this quarter. The media and entertainment industry, which was shaken by demonetization and later by GST, is back to normal now.

According to the FICCI KPMG Report 2018, ad spends slowed down for three to seven months across different segments of the M&E sector for the management of inventories due to the implementation of GST in July 2017. But things seem to be fine now with the two major events of this quarter, IPL and FIFA World Cup, driving the growth rate of the industry.

Zee Unimedia COO Ashish Sehgal feels that the industry was impacted by GST last year, but there should be a good growth in this quarter, primarily led by IPL 11.

“From an advertising point of view, IPL itself has grown 20-25 per cent compared to last year. And this big money of the quarter will impact the whole of TV industry,” said Sehgal.

According to Sehgal, Q1 can expect a 13-14 per cent growth on an average.

Rohit Gupta, President, Network Sales and International Business, Sony Pictures Networks India, also feel that the industry is back in business now.

“Q1 did really well and it looks like the industry is back now. At least for us, at Sony, we had a good growth rate. The two big ticket events for us were FIFA World Cup 2018 and India England Tour. These two were fully sold out. Therefore, it's been a good start to the year. With elections coming, it seems we will have a good year after a couple of years. The industry has recovered from demonetization and GST, the spends are happening, the focus on rural is there and also IPL did well. Hence, all together, it's a good start for the industry,”

Echoing the thought, Pawan Jailkhani, Chief Revenue Officer, 9X Media, said Q1 has been fantastic for everyone.
“The industry was not so well last year, but I think the last two quarters have been decent for everyone,” said Jailkhani. 
He too believes that Q1 will see around 14 per cent growth. “Hopefully elections happen this year as they will bring money and drive the growth. Also, money will come from people who are now getting benefits from GST,” he added.

According to the FICCI 2018 report, except for the auto category, all top advertising category showed growth. While the auto segment showed 13 per cent decline in secondages consumed, the top advertising category grew by an average of 15 per cent by volume.

Dinesh Vyas, Vice President, PHD, explained, “The auto category has not dropped the spend but has deferred some part of it. The spend is expected to pick up in August again. Last year Quarter 1, FMCG certainly got affected. People were worried about the long-term effect of demonetization and GST, hence they deferred their spends.”

He added, “This is a much better quarter than what we had expected. Thanks to IPL and FIFA World Cup 2018, people who were looking at associating with these sporting events have spent money this quarter. Clearly, people who didn’t have deep pockets did not associate with IPL, but if their products are sold to niche and younger audience, they have certainly tied up with Sony for FIFA.”

According to DART Media FY19 Preview report, Q1FY19 is expected to be healthy for most media companies led by recovery in various advertising verticals and favourable base impact for a few cos. ENIL and ZEE are estimated to report better revenue growth in the media segment vs peers led by the favourable base in Q1FY18.
Karan Taurani, VP Research- Dolat Capital, said, “We expect 10 per cent YoY revenue growth for our media universe where TV and radio lead in terms of performance. EBITDA margin for most of the media companies in DART coverage remains to be in a narrow band except in the case of radio companies whose margin are expected to grow YoY.”

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