Zimpapers Maintains Strong Growth | the herald

the herald

Olivier Kazunga Senior Business Journalist

DIVERSIFIED media group, Zimbabwe Newspapers (1980) Limited (Zimpapers) maintained strong performance after its revenue jumped 68% to $5.2 billion in the six months ended June 30, 2022, supported by the recovery of volumes in all operating divisions.

In the corresponding period last year, the group’s revenue was $3.1 billion.

Zimbabwe’s largest integrated and only publicly listed media house operates newspaper, commercial printing and broadcasting divisions.

In a statement accompanying the financial results for the period under review, Zimpapers Chairman of the Board, Mr Tommy Sithole, said the group had embarked on a digital transformation journey, investing in the tools and skills needed to meet the needs of local and global customers.

He said the media delivery technology available for digital newspapers and online radio broadcasting has allowed Zimpapers to gain insight into customer needs, thus equipping it with the business intelligence to deliver products and improved services.

The transformation to digital media has seen improvements on existing digital platforms, bringing value-added products and services to the group’s clients and customers.

“The company’s revenue increased 68% to $5.2 billion during the reporting period, compared to $3.1 billion for the same period last year.

“Revenue growth was supported by the recovery in volumes across all of the company’s operating divisions.

“Although the gross profit margin remained stable at 69%, as recorded last year, the net operating profit before interest, foreign exchange losses and currency adjustments improved to 17% against 14% for the same period. last year,” Mr Sithole said.

This, he said, was the result of better cost management, although operational cost savings were eroded by rising interest costs and foreign exchange losses, resulting in a net profit margin stable at 13%.

Mr Sithole said interest charges had increased due to high borrowing to finance new projects, while foreign exchange losses resulted from the depreciation of the exchange rate, associated with late payments to foreign suppliers of materials. raw.

“In absolute terms, net income before tax and currency adjustments increased 63% to $639 million from $391 million for 2021.

“A monetary loss of $353 million, compared to $7 million for the previous year, was recorded due to the hyperinflationary environment.

“This reduced the company’s net income before tax to $287 million from $384 million.”

Commenting on the Newspapers division, Mr Sithole said the division saw revenue grow 67 per cent to $3.5 billion from $2.1 billion in the same period last year, thanks to recovery of volumes.

The division’s advertising volume increased by 24% while newspaper circulation increased by 6%. As a result, a 120% growth in operating profit to $813.4 million was recorded by the division, compared to $368.9 million last year.

In commercial printing, the chairman of Zimpapers said the group experienced strong volume growth of 45%, driven by labels which increased by 48%.

Consistent with volume growth, divisional revenue increased 58% to $764.9 million from $485 million in 2021.

During the period under review, the division recorded significant growth in its operating profit to $77.4 million compared to $6.5 million for the same period of the previous year.

Broadcasting division revenues increased 75% to $973.3 million from $555.5 million in the same period last year.

“Revenue growth was supported by 14% volume growth and price recovery. The broadcasting division’s operating profit of $168.1 million was 137% higher than the $71 million recorded for the same period in 2021.

“However, the division’s overall performance has been affected by the ZTN project which is still in its infancy. The new ZTN channel is gaining momentum in terms of revenue generation and viewership following its launch on the DSTv platform on May 24, 2022,” Mr. Sithole said.

In the outlook, the Zimpapers Chairman of the Board expressed his optimism for a better second half of the year, supported by the resilience and recovery of the mining, construction, tourism and manufacturing sectors, among others. This has been the basis for general economic optimism as the government has forecast gross domestic product growth of 4.6% for the year.

“The company will continue to strengthen its product offering by improving the performance of its new and legacy products to deliver better profit margins. ZTN’s footprint is expected to continue to grow as the unit earns the trust of its audience.

“The digitization strategy remains at the core of the company’s operations and growth, resulting from the growing demand for digital products in the country and around the world,” Mr. Sithole said.

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