Most Cable TV Subscribers Opted for DPO Packs Under New Trai Regime: Hathway

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One of India’s largest cable TV service and broadband provider, Hathway Cable and Datacom Private Limited (HCDPL) has remarked that the subscribers of cable TV are opting mostly for the channel packs prepared by the distribution platform operators (DPOs). In its third quarter presentation, the cable operator said that almost 70% subscribers had chosen the plans curated by the DPOs, whereas others opted for their customised plans or went ahead with the plans being provided by the broadcasters, reported Television Post. The cable operator also said that the last quarter of 2018 was mostly about aligning the stakeholders with the new tariff order (NTO). Trai’s new regime forced the broadcasters to declare the MRP of individual channels along with bouquet pricing thus ensuring that subscribers can choose their own channels or create their bouquets depending on their viewing habits.


Subscribers Place Bet on DPO Curates Plans

Hathway said that after heavy consumer research and focused group interviews with the subscribers, it came up with plans for different markets like Maharashtra, Karnataka, Odisha, Sikkim, West Bengal, and other Hindi speaking markets. The cable operator also added that to facilitate smooth selection of channels and packages, it implemented the self-care/Mobile App/Hathway Connect. Additionally, the company claimed that it boosted its IT capabilities to handle four times more transactions. Hathway also said that it created best in class online consumer app or portal for online consumer request on channel or packages selection and payments request.

Hathway further said that the introduction of its DPO packs has proven to be a deal which is beneficial for both sides including the LCOs. The company said that on select packs, the DPOs would be able to earn Rs 100+ in tax.

15,000 Home Passes in Q3 FY19 for Hathway

Talking about some stats, Hathway said that in the Q3 FY19 collection efficiency stands at 99% despite ground challenges in low market share areas. The cable operator also shared ARPUs for various phases which included Phase I Rs 110/-, Phase II Rs 105/-, Phase III Rs 80/-, and Phase IV Rs 62/-. The company also stated that it saw a 3% decline in EBITDA on a sequential basis to Rs 36.1 crore from Rs 37.1 crore. Income, however, increased by 2% to Rs 267.8 crore and even with subscriptions remaining stagnant placement revenue increased 4%. Total expenses also shot up by 3% to Rs 231.7 crore. Pay channel cost also went up 3% to Rs 160.7 crore. Hathway’s Broadband subscription income increased 3% to Rs 134.9 crore from Rs 130.6 crore. Total expenditure was up by 9% at Rs 83.6 crore from Rs 76.8 crore.

In this quarter, the company made 15,000 home passes, and it also added 15,000 subscribers in the same period. The ARPU for this period went down to Rs 662 from Rs 672. The bandwidth consumption per consumer increased to 0.75 Mbps in December 2018 from 0.72 Mbps in November. Adding on to this fact, the company said that this increase is positive for long term wireline industry relevance.

Not only this, but the cable TV service provider is taking great strides in the industry as it announced the launch of Hathway Play box based on Android which was well received by the subscribers. Not only this, but Hathway also launched a chatbot based self-service platform, reduced customer complaint TAT, and deployed GPON FTTH Parallel network for premium customers.

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Arpit spends his day closely following the telecom and tech industry. A music connoisseur and a night owl, he also takes a deep interest in the Indian technology start-up scene and spends rest of his time spilling poetry and stories on paper.

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