eMedia, the South African television broadcaster that owns eTV and eNCA, recorded a profit after tax of R315 million ($17 million) despite a 1% advertiser spending pullback in the country.

The company’s R3.1 billion ($168 million) topline was driven by advertising revenue, which was R2.1 billion ($114 million), or 70% of total revenues. The advertising revenue, representing a 3% increase from the previous year, is the largest the company has ever recorded.

Although on the decline because of load shedding, cord cutting and competition from internet advertising, TV advertising in South Africa is a lucrative business for broadcasters like eMedia. Advertisers are willing to part ways with at least R1,100,000 ($60,000) for 170 placements, or “spots”, of a 30-second ad. They can even spend more if the ad exclusively runs in prime-time slots, weekdays between 6:00 pm and 11:30 pm.

“eMedia’s channels collectively have a prime time market share of 33.5%, making the company the market leader in South Africa,” the company told shareholders.

eTV recently surpassed state-owned SABC1 as South Africa’s leading prime-time television channel with a 20.7% prime-time market share. Apart from eTV, the rest of eMedia’s channels accounted for 27% of the company’s advertising revenue, amounting to R611 million ($33 million).

Loadshedding, which has plagued South Africa for over a decade, impacts TV broadcasters as advertisers are wary of spending top dollar for ad slots which might not yield much viewership because of the blackouts. According to data by Statista, TV ad spending in South Africa is expected to grow by only 1.4% annually by 2029, translating to revenues of $547 million.

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