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India's media sector records 12% growth in 2013

India's nationwide cable television digitisation programme helped spur a 12% growth in the country's media and entertainment (M&E) industry in 2013, according to a new report from FICCI-KPMG.

The economic slowdown hit TV and print advertising revenues hard, according to the findings, while the depreciation in the rupee was also detrimental to cable, direct-to-home (DTH) and print media. Conversely this worked well for the export of India's animation and VFX projects.

"2013 was a year in which many parts of the M&E industry paused and took stock. Focus shifted from top line growth to bottom line growth with companies focusing on operations and efficiency," said Jehil Thakkar, head of M&E, KPMG.

"In spite of a very challenging macro environment, the industry grew 12%, a far better performance than many other industries. The structural changes taking place in the industry – especially in television and digital – continued to take the industry down the path of fulfilling its potential."

With the near completion of the second phase of cable digitisation, TV channel carriage fees saw a reduction of 15-20% overall, according to the report. The anticipated increase in ARPUs and subscription revenues for broadcasters and multi-system operators, however, may take two to three years to realise.

India's Internet user base grew to around 214 million by the end of 2013, with 130 million accessing the Internet via mobile devices. This, according to FICCI-KPMG, saw mobile Internet users capturing a 61% share of the overall Internet user base.

Looking forward, the analysts point to the US and Middle East as providing potentially lucrative expansion markets for India's M&E industry.

The new report is issued ahead of India's entertainment industry event FICCI Frames 2014, which will be held in Mumbai from 12-14 March 2014.


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