Network 18 Media & Investments on October 19 posted consolidated revenue of Rs 1,387.2 crore for the quarter ended September 30, 2021, against Rs 1,061 crore logged in the same quarter last fiscal - a jump of 30.8 percent.
The company's profit after tax (PAT) during the quarter rose to Rs 200 crore which is 3x of Q2FY21, driven by improved revenue performance, controlled operating expense and lower finance costs.
Its consolidated earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) rose 52.4 percent (YoY) to Rs 252.3 crore and the consolidated operating margin came in at 18.2 percent.
Adil Zainulbhai, Chairman of Network18, said: “The way the country came out of the grip of the second wave of COVID was truly heartening and equally reassuring was the full-swing return of economic growth. The outlook is looking quite promising from a medium-term perspective and this is good news for all our consumer-facing businesses. Our digital assets, both news, and entertainment got a lift during the pandemic and we continue to invest to leverage those gains.”
Strong TV ad revenues
Ad volumes registered strong growth during the quarter as consumption and advertiser sentiment got a big boost due to a drop in the number of COVID-19 cases and the acceleration in the pace of vaccination drive across the country.
Ad revenues during the quarter grew 48.4 percent YoY managing to surpass pre-COVID levels i.e. Q2 FY20 by 35 percent.
TV news advertising also witnessed strong growth versus FY20.
In terms of revenue, TV news segment grew 18.5 percent YoY, achieving 115 percent of pre-COVID levels, led by resilient ad revenue performance.
Entertainment and infotainment channels segment witnessed a sharp surge in revenues witnessing a growth of 32.7 percent YoY, achieving 116 percent of pre-COVID levels.
The broadcast segment is also betting big on its foray into sports. Viacom18 has acquired the rights to the next FIFA World Cup, La Liga, Serie A, and Ligue 1. These properties will add to the existing portfolio of ATP Masters (tennis), Abu Dhabi T10 cricket, Road Safety World Series (cricket), and Carabao Cup (football).
Digital continues to grow, subscriptions increase
Subscription revenues were up 1.4 percent YoY at Rs 450 crore, achieving 98 percent of pre-COVID levels.
Digital news also saw growth in the second quarter. The segment saw 55 percent growth as operating revenues in the second quarter of FY22 stood at Rs 74 crore versus Rs 48 crore in Q2 FY21.
Digital news ad revenue is growing strongly, albeit on a low base. "With one of the biggest portfolio of digital news platforms spanning languages and genres, the business is well poised to gain from rising consumption on digital platforms, the company said.
On the digital front, over the top (OTT) platform Voot's paid subscriber base (Voot Select) saw a sharp jump in Q2 FY22 and the big driver was the launch of Bigg Boss OTT. The show garnered over 10 billion minutes of watch time over the six-week period.
Even the digital platform is focusing on sporting properties with Voot streaming major football leagues and a host of other sports properties.
The stock of the company ended 5.37 percent lower at Rs 79.25 on the BSE.
The share price touched a 52-week high of Rs 90 and a 52-week low of Rs 32.10 on October 18, 2021, and November 4, 2020, respectively.
Taking today's closing price into account, the stock is trading 11.94 percent lower from its 52-week high and 146.8 percent higher than its 52-week low levels.