August 2019



The Media & Entertainment (M&E) industry has welcomed the government's plans to allow Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in animation, visual effects, gaming and comics (AVGC) and start a new TV programme for start-ups under the Doordarshan umbrella. ABP News Network CEO Avinash Pandey said, "The proposal to ease FDI norms for the media industry will allow us to invest in digital assets, upgrade technology and human skill enhancement."

However, there was a lot of disappointment also.

Dentsu Aegis Network CEO Greater South and Chairman & CEO India Ashish Bhasin said "The expectations from a government coming with such a majority was that they would undertake substantial reforms, stimulate growth and cut tax rates. However, they have missed the opportunity to do so and have acted contradictorily by implementing surcharge on HNI individuals."


A s h o k Venkatramani - Managing Director of Zee Media Corporation Ltd (ZMCL) has resigned, w.e.f. 9th July.

Z M C L houses the TV news channels of the Zee Group.

ZMCL had appointed Venkatramani as MD for 3 years from 1st July 2018. Prior to ZMCL, he was CEO at ABP News Network.

Venkatramani, 55, is a B. Tech from Bombay University with management education from IIM Ahmedabad & Harvard Business School.

Incidentally, Jawahar Goel, CMD at Dish TV, have been given additional responsibility as Editor-In- Chief of ZMCL.


Hathway Cable and Datacom has posted a consolidated net loss of ₹ 9.4 crore for the quarter ended 30th June as against a net profit of ₹ 6.6 crore in the previous quarter. In the same quarter of the previous fiscal, the consolidated net loss stood at ₹ 51.7 crore.

Hathway's revenue increased 18% to ₹ 449.8 crore & EBITDA spurted 37% to ₹ 104.4 crore.

Cable TV subscription income was up 28% at ₹ 216.7 crore, a YoY increase of 38%. Pay channel cost fell 1%.

Placement revenue also increased 35% to ₹ 78.7 crore. Activation revenue, on a YoY basis dropped 13%.

Hathway's cable TV subscriber base stood at 6 million of which 2.68 lakh were HD subscribers. In Q1 FY20 the subscription collection efficiency was 100%, since after the New Tariff Order, the business model changed from B2B to B2B2C.

Broadband revenue was flat at ₹ 133.8 crore compared to ₹ 132.4 crore in Q4 FY19 and ₹ 129.8 crore in Q1 FY19.

Broadband homes passed rose to 5.5 million, of which 840,000 were subscribers, up from 810,000 in Q4 FY19. FTTH markets lead growth. Hathway's National average on monthly data consumption was 134 GB / consumer / month. Chennai being a pure FTTH market, data consumption average is 167 GB /consumer/month.


Viacom18 Media posted a net profit of ₹ 81.01 crore for the entire FY 2018-19. This is lower than ₹ 83.46 crore earned in FY18.

Total operating income dropped to ₹ 3666.75 crore from ₹ 3687.25 crore last year which included revenues from the box office hit Padmaavat.

Profitability margins in FY19 declined due to investments in Voot, the New Tariff Order (NTO) & Free Dish, which has reduced viewership.

Viacom18 Media is a subsidiary of TV18 Broadcast Limited (TV18), which is the broadcasting arm of Network 18 group. TV18 owns 51% in VMPL while the remaining stake is held by MTV Asia Ventures (India) Pte Ltd and Nickelodeon Asia Holdings Pte. Ltd (Viacom Inc. group companies).


GTPL Hathway's Q1 consolidated net profit surged 120.27% to ₹ 29.45 crore, compared to Q1 2018.

Pay channel cost spurted 54% to ₹ 180.2 crore over Q4.

Total consolidated income dropped 12% to ₹ 454.3 crore. Subscription revenue jumped 19% to ₹ 247.2 crore. Placement revenue increased 36% to ₹ 70.7 crore. Activation revenue was down 4% to ₹ 23 crore.

Broadband revenue increased 8% to ₹ 39.3 crore.

GTPL seeded 200,000 STBs, taking total seeded STBs to 9.70 million.

During Q1 FY20, the company added 240,000 broadband homes passed. Total Home Pass stood at 2.66 million of which 50% were FTTX. Total subscribers were 340,000 of which 64,000 are FTTX subscribers. Q1 Broadband ARPU was ₹ 420.


DEN Networks has posted a consolidated net profit of ₹ 14 crore for the quarter ended 30th June as against a net loss of ₹ 213 crore in the trailing quarter. In the corresponding quarter of the previous fiscal, the net loss stood at ₹ 28 crore.

EBITDA was up 10% QoQ to ₹ 41 crore.

Subscription revenue increased 7% QoQ to ₹ 189 crore.

Total revenue was up 14% while total cost was up 15%. Content cost spurted 27% QoQ to ₹ 159 crore.

The company posted a net profit of ₹ 20 crore from the cable business as against a net loss of ₹ 193 crore in the previous quarter.

The net loss from broadband business narrowed to ₹ 5 crore from ₹ 20 crore in Q4 FY19. EBITDA remained flat at ₹ 1 crore. Revenue and total cost from the segment remained flat at ₹ 18 crore and ₹ 17 crore respectively.

DEN's Cable operations cover over 500+ cities/towns across 13 key states (Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Haryana, Kerala, West Bengal, Jharkhand, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Uttarakhand) in India. It provides fixed broadband services across 47 Cities/ Towns in India.


P r a v i n K u m a r Purwar has b e e n appointed Chairman & Managing Director of BSNL for a period of 5 years. He was earlier CMD of MTNL. In FY19, BSNL posted a net loss of ₹ 13,804 crore on a revenue of ₹ 18,865 crore.

BSNL will soon start sale of its real estate, valued at ₹ 20,000 Crores.

The Public sector telco is heavily in the red. It spends 75% of its revenues on salaries.

The government explored stake sale but there were no buyers. Instead, a ₹ 74,000 rescue package is planned. VRS retirement will be offered to 1,65,000 employees, costing the tax payer ₹ 40,000 Cr. n