GMA Network Inc. (GMA) reported a net income of P1.09 billion for the first half of 2015, up 89 percent from the P582 million recorded in the same period of last year.
“In the first semester alone, we have not only breached the one billion-peso mark in terms of net income but have also exceeded last year’s full year bottom-line performance by at least P89 million,” GMA chairman and chief executive officer Felipe Gozon said.
“We are optimistic that the rest of 2015 will also bring positive results for our company,” he added.
Revenue in the first half increased by 15 percent to P6.65 billion, boosted by the network’s record-breaking performance in the second quarter.
For the second quarter alone, revenue climbed 25 percent to P3.6 billion while net income soared 170 percent to P690.7 million mainly on higher advertising revenues.
Operating expenses from January to June slightly grew by 3 percent to P5.05 billion as total production cost and general and administrative expenses (GAEX) increased by 4 percent and 1 percent, respectively, year-on-year.
EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) stood at P2.4 billion, 54 percent higher compared to the previous year.
Airtime revenues for the first half improved by 18 percent to P6.069 billion, with flagship Channel 7 driving the increase due to its continued dominance in the viewer-rich areas of Urban Luzon and Mega Manila.
Meanwhile, sought for comment on the P1-billion complaint filed by businessman Ramon S. Ang, Gozon said: “The word reasonable is very important. I’m just speaking for myself, I don’t know the feeling of Mr. Ang. I can only speak for ourselves that despite all of these, we are open to a reasonable, mutually acceptable settlement.”
Gozon also said that they are currently in talks with the two major telcos in the country.
Reports earlier said that the group of Manny V. Pangilinan-led Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT) may revive talks with GMA to acquire a stake in the broadcast company while Ayala-led Globe Telecom had also disclosed that it was in discussions with the GMA for possible content partnerships.
“We have scheduled meetings with PLDT; the meeting with Globe is ongoing. Sooner or later an agreement will be finalized,” Gozon said.
When asked about selling the GMA Network shares to PLDT chairman Manny Pangilinan, Gozon replied: “I have consistently taken the position that we are not really selling our shares, but if there are good offers, we will listen to them seriously.”
When asked if they are going to sell to the Ayala or the MVP Group, he replied: “I cannot comment on that.”
Double-digit rise in revenues
GMA News TV, the country’s number one news channel, also registered a double-digit improvement of 26 percent in revenues, while the company’s radio business posted a 21 percent increase in sales. Its regional TV operations posted flat growth compared to last year.
GMA International, which manages the operations and distribution of the network’s international channels, continued to grow its audience base during the period.
By the end of June, flagship international channel GMA Pinoy TV achieved a 4 percent increase in its viewership with an estimated 1.4 million viewers. GMA Life TV also grew by 9 percent with an estimated 554,000 viewers, while GMA News TV International posted the highest growth of 50 percent versus last year with an estimated 227,000 viewers.
GMA’s entertainment and news content likewise continued to become more popular among foreign audiences as GMA Worldwide, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Network that syndicates Kapuso programs to the international market, sold 2,366 program hours in the first six months amounting to USD 1.15 million in various countries including Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Brunei, Singapore, Myanmar, Nigeria and Hawaii.
GMA New Media Inc. (NMI) ended the first half of the year with a 56 percent increase in its total advertising sales. Improvements to the two primary websites to make them more suitable for “programmatic buying” contributed much to the sustained growth in web traffic and also increased the available online advertising inventory, thus, boosting NMI’s year-to-date revenues.
According to Effective Measure, both GMA News Online (gmanetwork.com/news) and GMA’s official entertainment website (gmanetwork.com/entertainment) posted significantly more pageviews for the period covering January to June 2015 compared to the same period last year, conveying the Network’s agility and responsiveness to the dynamic changes in online media consumption.
Furthermore, all current and future efforts are geared toward ensuring pervasiveness of GMA content across all platforms by using the latest technology to facilitate ease of access and by constantly creating superior online content.