Balaji Telefilms posts consolidated operating profit of Rs 5.3 cr in Q2

MUMBAI: Balaji Telefilms has turned EBITDA positive at the consolidated level for the quarter ended 30th September. The company posted an EBITDA of Rs 5.3 crore compared to an EBITDA loss of Rs 16.3 crore in the corresponding quarter of the previous fiscal.

The content production company has narrowed its consolidated net loss to Rs 10.7 crore for the quarter compared to Rs 15.4 crore. Total income from operations jumped to Rs 187.5 crore from Rs 119.1 crore a year ago due to the release of three movies in the quarter. Total expenses jumped to Rs 192.58 crore compared to Rs 140.21 crore.

The standalone TV+movie production business posted a net profit of Rs 15.50 crore compared to a net profit of Rs 7.1 crore in the previous fiscal. Standalone income jumped to Rs 176.13 crore from Rs 112.6 crore. Total expenditure came in at Rs 157.42 crore from Rs 112.8 crore.

Balaji Telefilms MD Shobha Kapoor said, “This quarter we created good, compelling and entertaining content across all our business verticals and this has resulted in a very strong financial performance. Apart from driving the top line, we remain focussed on cost-saving measures that allow us to leverage economies of scale in content production, yielding an improved bottom line. We will continue to focus on growing the business profitably and utilising our existing cash reserves prudently, as we have been doing.”

Balaji Telefilms TV content production business continues to dominate the ratings and accounts for 17% of the Primetime ratings. During the quarter, the company produced 210.5 hours of content at an average realisation of Rs 0.36 crore/ hour.

The gross margin has improved by 27.3% to Rs 24.1 crore compared to Rs 16.6 crore. Gross margin/hour stood at Rs 0.11 crore compared to Rs 0.09 crore.

The company said that there has been an improvement in programming hours with a new weekend show commencing on Zee TV. Gross margins continue to remain strong driven by better operating efficiencies and overall cost control.

Balaji Telefilms had eight shows on air across 4 channels during the quarter with two more shows – Naagin 4 on Colors and Yeh Hai Chahatein on Star Plus – expected to release shortly.

During the quarter, the company released three movies released while the fourth movie will release later this year. However, only a part of the revenues and profitability included in this quarter. Additional revenues and profitability from the sale of satellite rights to be accounted for in Q3.

‘Dream Girl’, a movie produced by Balaji Telefilms performed exceedingly well and is one of the year’s biggest hit movies. The movie has grossed over Rs 170 crore in the box office so far.

The company stated that its current slate of four movies for the year have been pre-sold for over Rs 100 crore, assuring strong profitability for the full year.

The net loss from ALTBalaji business widened to Rs 31.19 crore as against Rs 22 crore a year ago. Revenue from the segment stood at Rs 20.11 crore compared to Rs 14.3 crore. Expenditure rose to Rs 52.27 crore from Rs 37.8 crore.

ALTBalaji continues to be a leader in the original Hindi SVoD space with a bank of 48 shows. The content alliance with ZEE5 to produce 60+ originals has gone live with five shows releasing so far.

The platform has moved into a single partner behind the paywall ecosystem vs a multi-partner free to consumer ecosystem. The company stated that the alliance allows ALTBalaji to minimise cash burn while developing a profitable and scalable, direct-to-consumer business.

The company that ALTBalaji‘s direct subscribers continue to grow 3x growth in direct revenues in Q2 FY20 vs Q2 FY19. The platform enjoys high engagement with subscribers watching nearly one hour a day.

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