South African TV broadcaster eMedia has posted a loss of R1.6 billion for the year ended 31 March 2018, according to its annual results.
In 2017, the company posted a profit of R160 million, with it stating that this year’s loss was largely due to continuous pressure from the SABC on Etv.
“Etv’s share of broadcast audience remains under pressure, mostly due to the popularity of local dramas commissioned by the SABC,” said eMedia.
The company said it faced unfair competition from the public broadcaster as the SABC is subsidised and commissions a large amount of local content.
“While the SABC commissions a substantial amount of local programming, at much higher cost than equivalent international content, our ability to commission additional local drama is limited by our production budget and profitability,” said eMedia.
“Our schedule will remain under pressure while the SABC continues to operate under a subsidised regime.”
Despite its complaints around unfair competition from the SABC, eMedia said it was confident its current programming schedule should stop any significant decline.
eMedia also recently announced it would launch a new OpenNews channel on its OpenView HD platform.