South Africa’s e-TV owner, eMedia Investment, has reported a half-year profit from continuing operations of US$8,5 million, down from US$10 million a year ago, representing a 19.7 per cent decrease compared to the April–September period a year ago.
The broadcaster attributed the decrease to the contraction of South Africa’s TV advertising market and the negative impact of the rand-dollar exchange rate.
eMedia said the total TV advertising spend was 8 per cent less than the same period in the previous year.
The broadcaster also stated that it saw a notable increase in legal fees due to “the contentious situation with the Minister of Communications” over South Africa’s analogue TV signal switch-off and a court battle with MultiChoice for removing four eMedia channels from DStv.
This non-recurring expense, the Group believes, is beneficial for the Group’s progress. In addition, management sees these increased legal fees as an investment in the future of the business.
eMedia’s revenue increased by 2.1 per cent to US$88 billion, while operating profit decreased by 17.6 per cent from US$14 million to US$11 million.
eMedia said in a statement, “A remarkable journey of success is unfolding as the eMedia Group releases positive and very satisfactory half-year results, despite the tough economic climate.”
eMedia noted that the AMR for E-tv decreased by 5 per cent, showing that its increased market share has helped the company.
Commenting on the results, eMedia CEO Khalik Sherrif said, “It shows that we are doing something right and that our programming is in line with audience demand.”
Sherrif said they could not downplay the impact load-shedding has on the business and the rest of the industry. However, the company notes that it improved its market share from 21.8 per cent to 23.7 per cent.
eMedia said on 30 September the Group had a combined market share of 36.2 per cent in prime time, up from 31.8 per cent in the previous period and 33.3 per cent share for 06:00 to 24:00. This compares to the SABC at 27.3 per cent and DStv’s share at 30.5 per cent.