ABS-CBN 9-mth net profit surges 50% to P2.85B

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Lopez-owned ABS-CBN Corp. reported its net income rose 50 percent in the first nine months of the year on the back of stronger advertising revenues from election-related spending and improved ratings.

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The country’s leading media and entertainment company said its net income reached P2.85 billion in the January to September period, or 50 percent from a year earlier. Consolidated revenue for the period was pegged at P31.1 billion.

ABS-CBN Chief Financial Officer Aldrin Cerrado attributed the increase to strong advertising revenues during the first nine months, which were boosted by election-related spending and “the continued leadership in ratings of our primetime shows.”

“Our ratings performance is key since we have adopted the cost per individual rating point pricing (CPIRP) scheme,” said Cerrado.

The executive expressed confidence that ABS-CBN will meet its earnings guidance of P3.2 billion to P3.5 billion for 2016.

Cerrado also said ABS-CBN has an ongoing program to manage costs more efficiently.

“We have been successful in controlling production costs and have been able to reduce expenses on a per program basis compared to last year,” he explained.

According to Kantar Media, the top 10 programs for the first nine months of 2016 for free-to-air television nationwide covering both urban and rural homes were all produced by ABS-CBN with “FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano” consistently ranking number one. The company’s Digital Terrestrial Television or DTT helped boost audience share with over 1.6 million ABS-CBN TVPlus boxes sold as of the end of September.

Kantar Media uses a nationwide panel size of 2,610 urban and rural homes that represent 100 percent of the total Philippine TV viewing population, while the other ratings data supplier AGB Nielsen reportedly has 2,000 homes based in urban areas that represent only 57 percent of the Philippine TV viewing population.

Online, viewership of ABS-CBN content also remained strong with ABS-CBN’s video-on-demand service iWant TV – the leading OTT platform in the Philippines – continuing to garner millions of page views very month.

Total assets rose to P74.7 billion as of the end September 2016 from P70.4 billion as of end last year. The company’s equity base increased to P30.8 billion as of the end of September 2016.

ABS-CBN’s ventures outside its TV and studio business have exhibited strong performances as well. The company’s consumer business is generated from three types of businesses, namely subscription, ticketed experiences, and durable goods.

Ron Valdueza, ABS-CBN’s Group CFO said, “Sky Cable has improved its profitability, assisted by cost control measures and the continued steep increase in its broadband subscriber base.”

Valdueza said the launch of Sky’s direct-to-home pay TV service nationwide under the brand SkyDirect last May brought in over 70,000 new subscribers.

“By year-end, Sky’s total Pay TV and Broadband subscriber base should breach the 1 million mark,” he said.

Consistent with the company’s vision of touching the lives of “Kapamilyas” overseas and finding new ways outside TV viewing that would allow its customers’ experiences to be more immersive and interactive, ABS-CBN Global staged “ASAP New York” at the Barclay’s Center. An audience of about 9,000 was entertained by more than 50 artists during the four-hour show.

The Filipino Channel (TFC) is now being watched by over 3 million Filipinos abroad, the Valdueza added.

Kidzania, the company’s educational theme park, has welcomed over 200,000 visitors since the beginning of the year, while the O Shopping Channel has generated P612 million in sales of various products for the first nine months of 2016.

“With all these achievements, ABS-CBN is poised to deliver record earnings performance this year,” said Valdueza.

ABS-CBN is home to the nation’s top-rating TV programs, box-office films, and best-selling books and music. With the ability to harness the latest in technology and innovation, the company is rapidly transitioning into an agile digital company with the biggest online presence among all media companies, and a growing list of digital properties, it said.

ABS-CBN was also first in the country to offer content online and on mobile, and pioneered digital television in the nation.

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