IMCL FY18 net loss narrows 35% to Rs 219.8 cr

MUMBAI: Cable TV and headend in the sky (HITS) service provider IndusInd Media and Communications Ltd (IMCL) has narrowed its consolidated net loss by 35% to Rs 219.8 crore for the fiscal ended 31 March compared to Rs 339.3 crore in FY17.

The company’s revenue jumped 23% to Rs 591.3 crore compared to Rs 482.6 crore. Expenses ballooned to Rs 1035 crore as against Rs 890 crore in the year ago period.

IMCL earned subscription revenue of Rs 370.8 crore which is a 36% increase from Rs 272.2 crore in FY17. The channel placement fees were down 16% to Rs 95.3 crore compared to Rs 113.5 crore. The income from the sale to set top boxes (STBs) was Rs 19.56 crore compared to Rs 4.29 crore.

The pay channel cost was up 28% at Rs 447.5 crore compared to Rs 350.6 crore. Transponder charges doubled to Rs 27.8 crore from Rs 14.3 crore. Employee cost stood at Rs 49.3 crore compared to Rs 46.5 crore.

The Company vide an arrangement with Grant Investrade Limited (GIL), a wholly owned subsidiary of Hinduja Ventures Limited, the Parent Company, merged the HITS business division of GIL as per the scheme approved by the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) on 10 August 2017 with effect from 1 October 2016.

In FY18, IMCL had deployed 1.5 million STBs which is a 29% increase over the deployment in the previous fiscal. IMCL benefited from the combination of the HITS and cable TV under a single company. The company provides HITS and cable TV services under NXT Digital and InDigital brands.

IMCL along with its subsidiary companies has an active subscriber base of 4.6 million. In the previous fiscal, the consolidated subscriber base was 4 million.

During the year, the company had acquired controlling shares in Vinsat Digital Private Limited (VDPL) through Share Holding Agreement dated 2 January 2018 with the existing shareholders and received 610,000 equity shares at face value of INR 1 each.

Further, the company transferred all its STBs in Vishakhapatnam area via Business Transfer agreement (‘BTA’) to VDPL on a slump sale basis based on the independent valuation.

The company has received additional 555,000 equity shares from VDPL, as consideration for business/STBs transfer and the existing shareholders have received 59,835 fresh equity shares from VDPL, as a capital infusion.

As at 31 March 2018, the company’s total investments in VDPL is Rs 4.67 crore with 61% ownership.

The company has also impaired the value of the investment made in the subsidiary Amaravara Indigital Media Services and written off all the advances given in its books of accounts.

Due to certain differences between the company and the other shareholders, the operation of Amaravara Indigital Media Services was severely impacted leading to stoppage of business during the year.

The company has sold its entire Optical Fibre Cable Network (OFN), both underground and aerial, on an ongoing concern basis together with the rights, obligations, permissions for a consideration of Rs 230 crore plus applicable taxes thereon, effective 2 January 2018, to GIL, which is a subsidiary of the holding company.

The company has relied on a valuation report issued by a firm of experts who have carried out the valuation of the existing OFN of the Company. The excess consideration, net of incidental expenses, over and above the carrying value of OFN assets, is Rs 189.19 crore has been credited to the Consolidated Statement of profit and loss and the same is disclosed under the head ‘Exceptional Income’.