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REMGRO EYES e.tv ONLINE GROWTH

Listed holding company Remgro is eyeing a multi-channel strategy through its interest in e-tv owner, Sabido, as it looks to enhance its revenue streams. This would include online channels.

Remgro has an effective interest of 31.6% in Sabido which has a range of media interests, which includes South Africa’s only private free-to-air television channel, e.tv, its sister news service, eNews Channel Africa (eNCA), Gauteng-based radio station, Yfm and various studio and facilities businesses.

“The focus of the group for the forthcoming months is the ongoing development of a multi-channel strategy to enhance its competitiveness across a multiplicity of platforms and provide opportunities for new revenue streams,” Remgro said on Tuesday (19 March).

“This includes the launch of e-tv Online and eNCA Online in the first half of 2013,” it said.

In reporting its interim results for the period ended December, 2012, Remgro noted that Sabido’s contribution to its headline earnings for the period under review amounted to R78 million (2011: R72 million).

“Despite aggressive growth in pay television, which is impacting on audience share for free-to-air services, e-tv has managed to hold its own against the increasing competition,” Remgro said.

All Media Products Survey (AMPS) figures for June 2012 showed a 2.6% growth for e-tv, ahead of the industry’s 1.2% growth, taking its reach to 16.5 million viewers.

However, the holding group said that audience and advertising share are increasingly under pressure from pay-TV as the continued delays in the launch of digital terrestrial television prevent free-to-air services from providing multi-channel offerings.

“The future of free-to-air television in South Africa, including e-tv, is critically dependent on the availability of a free-to-air platform which can compete effectively with the dominant pay-TV player,” it said.

Remgro has an effective interest of 31.6% in Sabido which has a range of media interests, which includes South Africa’s only private free-to-air television channel, e.tv, its sister news service, eNews Channel Africa (eNCA),Gauteng-based radio station, Yfm and various studio and facilities businesses.

Remgro said that e.sat tv’s primary operating business, eNCA, benefited from subscriber growth in the DStv Compact platform and retained its position as the premier news service on DStv.

eNCA launched on the Sky digital platform in the United Kingdom during August 2012, making it available to 10 million UK households and the service is now available internationally on online platform Livestation, Remgro said.

“Advertising sales on e-tv, eNCA and Yfm were under pressure during the period under review but programming and operating costs remained stable. The studios and facilities businesses performed as expected with the exception of post-production business, The Refinery, which is experiencing difficult market conditions,” Remgro said.

Source: BusinessTech – Gareth Vorster