“According to ratings firm Crisil, the Indian media and entertainment (M&E) sector is projected to grow at 27% in revenue to ~ Rs. 1.37 lakh crore (US$ 18.92 billion) in FY22.
Segments which would recover faster to pre-pandemic levels include digital and television (TV) while print, films, outdoor, and radio would take longer to return to pre-pandemic levels.
Crisil Ratings Ltd. Director Mr. Nitesh Jain said, “Advertising and subscription revenues contribute almost equally to the topline of the overall M&E market.”
In FY22, with a strong economic recovery on the way, ad revenue is expected to increase by 31% YoY and subscription revenue by ~ 24%.
The TV segment contributing about half of the sector’s topline, will register positive growth in FY22. In 2020, Ad sales recovered rapidly driven by the airing of new content, sporting events such as the Indian Premier League and an upbeat festive season.
TV segment registered strong growth in 2020 even for subscriptions as consumers stayed indoors.
The print segment, accounts for a fifth of the M&E market. To remain strong, print businesses are reconfiguring their cost structure and accelerating digital adoption.
Crisil Ratings Ltd. Associate Director Mr. Rakshit Kachhal said, “Digital has emerged as the primary medium of choice. The pandemic has accelerated the adoption of over-the-top (OTT) channels, online gaming, e-commerce, e-learning, e-papers and online news platforms.
Mr. Kachhal added, “This has indicated that advertisers’ emphasis has moved from mainstream to digital media. Over the medium term, we expect the digital segment revenue to increase 14-16% annually. By FY24, its share of revenue in the M&E sector is projected to double to about 20% compared to last fiscal year.”
Due to solid balance sheets, liquidity and the sales recovery, credit profiles of large media firms will be unaffected, whereas mid-sized and small ones could see pressure.
According to Crisil Ratings, with the rollout of vaccination and strong pipeline of content, occupancies in theatres are expected to improve. However, with the continuation of social distancing norms the recovery in the film segment may take longer.
Crisil said significant cost rationalisation strategies have been implemented by M&E companies. With the incorporation of digital media into the conventional businesses, the pandemic-led shift in customer behaviour has accelerated monetisation opportunities for these players.
Over the longer term, some of these factors could lead to structural changes in the M&E sector’s business models.”