Astro Delivers Strong Q2FY20 PATAMI at RM169mn

Astro Delivers Strong Q2FY20 PATAMI at RM169mn

Result highlights for the second quarter of the financial year ending 31 January 2020 (Q2FY20)

  • Revenue -13% y-o-y at RM1.2bn
  • EBITDA +51% y-o-y to RM437mn
  • PATAMI +920% y-o-y to RM169mn; underpinned by cost discipline measures
  • Strong FCF of RM346mn enables second interim dividend of 2 sen per share
  • Pay-TV ARPU +10 sen y-o-y to RM100
  • TV Adex +8% y-o-y to RM86mn

Tun Zaki Azmi, Chairman of Astro, said: “In a competitive media landscape, Astro remains highly cash generative, cost disciplined and proactive in its capital management. The Board is pleased to declare a second interim dividend of 2 sen per share.”

Henry Tan, Chief Executive Officer of Astro, said: “Astro continues to deliver strong PATAMI with rigorous cost discipline to optimise content spend and operating expenses. Concurrently, we are putting in place building blocks for new revenue adjacencies, specifically in broadband and content bundles with Maxis and in OTT through our strategic partnerships with iQIYI and HBO Asia; with more partnerships in the coming months.”

Key Operational Highlights:

  • Leading share of Malaysian TV households: Astro continues to entertain and engage with 5.7mn, or 76% of Malaysian TV households with its signature vernacular and premium content as well as the biggest live sports on our Pay-TV and NJOI platforms.
  • Rising consumption on all platforms: Astro’s TV viewership share is market leading at 75%. Over 1.0mn connected set-top-boxes*, up 11% y-o-y, drove growth in On Demand video downloads by 38% to 33mn and average weekly viewing by 11% to 462 minutes. Meanwhile, Astro GO’s registered users rose by 19% to 2.3mn and their average weekly viewing increased by 27% to 207 minutes.
  • Outperforming industry Adex in 1HFY20: While Astro’s total Adex in 1HFY20 declined by 3% to RM302mn, it outperformed industry Adex, which saw a 5% contraction. Astro’s share of TV Adex rose by 3 percentage points to 44% and share of Radex increased by 6 percentage points to 80%.
    • In Q2FY20, Astro’s TV Adex grew 8% y-o-y to RM86mn, supported by strong TV viewership share. Digital Adex stood at RM12mn, underpinned by average monthly unique viewers of 10.1mn across its digital brands such as Astro Awani, Gempak, Xuan, Ulagam and Stadium Astro.

Key Initiatives:

  • Introducing a new user experience: Astro GO has introduced a new user interface in July for easier navigation, better content discoverability, enhanced search and recommendations based on viewing behaviour. With the new Astro GO, users can access over 50,000 On Demand titles anytime, anywhere on mobile devices. Astro will soon launch its Ultra Box, offering new viewing experience such as 4K-Ultra HD and cloud recording that allows unlimited programmes to be recorded.
  • Radio on the GO and much more: SYOK app, a multilingual entertainment and lifestyle platform, was launched in end-June and saw a healthy take-up with an average 51 minutes time spent per session. SYOK offers access to Astro’s 25 radio brands, podcasts, original videos, as well as the latest news and traffic updates.
  • Local and vernacular content continues to drive fan engagement:
    • Astro Shaw movies continue its winning strides: Boboiboy Movie 2, a collaboration with leading animation producer, Animonsta, became the highest grossing animated film in Malaysia with box office sales of RM29mn, beating Hollywood titles such as The Incredibles 2, Big Hero 6, How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World and Frozen. Meanwhile, Malaysia’s first martial arts movie, Sangkar, a collaboration between Media Prima, Infinitus Gold and MM2 Entertainment, was released on 29 August.
    • Astro original IPs continue to grow from strength to strength: Astro’s latest dramas, Curi-Curi Cinta, Setelah Terlafaznya Akad and Sweet Dreams garnered TV viewership of 3.2mn, 2.6mn and 2.4mn respectively. Its reality talent shows such as Muzikal Lawak SuperStar registered TV viewership of 1.7mn while Big Stage 2019 expanded its arena beyond Malaysian shores with participation of talents from South Korea Indonesia, Thailand and Brunei. It achieved TV viewership of 1.3mn.
    • Omar & Hana licensed to Indonesia`s leading telecommunications operator, Telkomsel: Astro’s faith-inspired singalong kids IP, Omar & Hana, is now available on Telkomsel’s video streaming app, MAXstream.
    • First iQIYI branded channel: Following the announcement on our strategic partnership with China’s No. 1 video streaming platform, Astro has launched the world’s first iQIYI branded channel, iQIYI HD. It offers exclusive and the latest iQIYI originals such as hit drama series, movies, reality and variety content for Astro customers.

Outlook
The market remains challenging with structural changes in the global content, media and advertising industries, including threat of piracy. Astro’s focus is to strengthen its core Pay-TV and NJOI businesses by redefining customer value propositions, elevating customer service and refreshing content. The company will leverage on its customer base to build new revenue adjacencies in broadband, OTT, digital and commerce. Cost optimisation efforts will continue.

*Connected set-top boxes (STBs) are internet-ready with recording functionality and have access to Astro’s On Demand library of content