Dish TV Q3 operating revenue down 6% to Rs 815.7 cr

The company's profit after tax was at Rs. 86.4 crore as against a net loss of Rs. 66.8 crore in the same quarter last year

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Feb 1, 2021 3:08 PM
dish tv

Dish TV India today reported third-quarter fiscal 2021 operating revenues of Rs 815.7 crore, a 6% YoY decline compared to Rs 867.8 crore. Subscription revenue was down 6.7% to Rs 744.9 crore from Rs 798.2 crore a year ago.
Total expenses fell to 13.9% to Rs 311.7 crore from Rs 362.2 crore. EBITDA for the quarter stood at Rs. 503.9 crore as against Rs 505.6 crore in Q3 FY20. EBITDA margin was at 61.8%, up 350 bps Y-o-Y. Profit after tax was at Rs. 86.4 crore as against a net loss of Rs. 66.8 crore in the same quarter last year.

The company said that the expectations that consumer sentiment too would catch some tailwind, with the commencement of the cricketing season at the end of the second quarter, and that it would remain elevated through the traditionally strong third quarter, didn’t see much light as the consuming class remained conservative despite somewhat easing COVID restrictions.

It further added that spending related cautiousness amongst subscribers, coupled with moderate new subscriber additions by the Company led to a spike in the subscriber churn rate. Festivals were without the usual consumer exuberance and low levels of spending in November and December were in sharp contrast to the spending around Diwali.

Dish TV India Group CEO Anil Dua said, “The effect of the pandemic is carrying on. While some uptick was expected during the festival period, it was offset by a muted consumer sentiment. Our focus on the cost front and on driving operational efficiencies however continued unabated thus leading to higher operating margins and better net profitability.”

“We continued to re-configure our range of offerings to make them fit the contours of a changing ecosystem as well as the evolving needs of the traditional television users. Watcho - our homegrown OTT platform and our recently launched Android set-top-boxes are well-positioned to meet that requirement. Watcho is now close to the 14 million members mark and is poised to grow at a fair pace,” added  Dua.

The Watcho platform saw the launch of two major series – ‘Jaalsaazi – The single horn mystery’ and ‘The Game Plan,’ both adding to the existing originals. Activities around Watcho that target user engagement and recharge of the underlying DTH connection, are being regularly planned and carried out by the Company.

Headwinds, from elevated inflation levels and significant job losses, may keep the industry striving for growth for some time, but Dish TV India chose to be resilient long back. The Company continues to evolve with innovative digital offerings for its subscribers. Dish TV India Limited introduced the ‘scan to help’ feature on the Dish TV app during the quarter.

The new ‘scan to help’ feature empowers all Dish TV India subscribers to self-help in case of any technical errors in their set-top-box. In case of any error on the screen, all a subscriber needs to do is just scan it and get access to his account details along with the relevant troubleshooting guide.

The feature also provides an option to raise a ‘service ticket’ in the process. The ‘AI’ enabled ‘scan to help’ feature aims to go a long way to provide unparalleled service and TV viewing experience to Dish TV India subscribers amidst these challenging times.

Revised Guidelines for providing Direct to Home (DTH) Services in India

The Union Cabinet on December 23, 2020, approved the proposal for revision of the guidelines for obtaining license for providing DTH broadcasting services in India. Dish TV India’s DTH license was valid up to December 31, 2019, and the Company had duly filed the requisite applications for extension of the DTH license. Subsequently, on June 25, 2020, the Company had received an interim extension of the DTH license from the Ministry with validity till March 31, 2021, or till the date of notification of ‘New DTH guidelines,’ whichever is earlier.

The revised guidelines, amongst other features, provide for the issue of a DTH license for a period of 20 years as against the present 10 years with the period of license getting renewed by 10 years at a time. The Cabinet revised the license fees from 10% of Gross Revenues (GR) to 8% of Adjusted Gross Revenues (AGR) with AGR being calculated by deduction of Goods and Services Tax (GST) from GR.

Further, the license fee will be collected on a quarterly basis in lieu of the present annual basis. Also, the cap of 49% Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the existing DTH guidelines shall be aligned with the extant Government (DPIIT’s) policy on FDI (100%).

Talking about the development, Dish TV CMD Jawahar Goel said, “We are thankful to the Government for the amended DTH guidelines with longer license period and clarity on renewals, relaxed FDI limits, etc. However, our representation for a unified license fee structure and a level playing field for the entire distribution sector where cable TV is also subject to license fees remained unanswered. The 8% license fee, though lower, is still prohibitive considering other taxes and should be brought to a more sustainable level.”
Divestment of Dish TV Lanka
In a separate filing, Dish TV board approved the divestment of the entire equity investment in Dish TV Lanka (Private) Ltd, a subsidiary of the company. Union Network International Pvt Ltd having its office at 20 Nelson Place, Colombo 6, Sri Lanka is the buyer of Dish TV Lanka.

The company said that the consideration will be approximately 25 million Sri Lankan Rupees. Revenue from Dish TV Lanka is Rs 4.91 crore, constituting 0.14% of the total revenue of the company. The company said the agreement is yet to be executed.

"The transaction shall be completed post fulfilment of the conditions of the Share Sale Agreement and requisite regulatory approvals. Subject to applicable laws and necessary adjustments, the consideration shall be approx 25 million sri lankan rupees," it said.

New Offerings

Dish TV and d2h Android boxes offer a host of features including built-in Google Assistant, Chromecast, Google Play, and access to popular OTT platforms like Watcho, YouTube, Amazon Prime Video, and ZEE5. In a bid to further strengthen the offerings on its Android box, the Company during the quarter brought on board the ‘Hungama Play’ app for its smart box users.

In yet another addition, Dish TV India also introduced the ‘EPIC ON’ app on its Dish SMRT Hub and d2h Stream Android set-top-boxes. Both these platforms bring with them a massive content library with more than 2,000 hours of series, movies, talks, and documentaries.

Expanding its reach deeper into North-East India markets, the d2h brand of the Company initiated services in Upper Assam and the rest of the North-Eastern region. With this launch, d2h aims to bring technologically advanced HD set-top boxes and a comprehensive service network for the entire population staying in this beautiful part of the country.

The COVID-induced lockdown saw many students struggling to stay up to speed with their erstwhile education routine. With limited broadband accessibility, DTH streaming became one of the preferred mediums to reach out to students. One such educational channel – ‘Kalvi Tholaikkatchi,’ launched by the Tamil Nadu Government, introduced by Dish TV India on both its platforms, enabled millions of students to receive quality education every day from the safety of their homes.

This channel is in addition to 33 other educational channels that are being beamed across the country from both the Dish TV and d2h platforms

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