I am delighted and privileged to communicate with our esteemed shareholder family for the year in retrospect and our journey going forward. Year 2014 has reserved its place in our Country's history books as the year of definitive change and transition. The election ushered in a new leadership with a mission to reboot the economy, deliver stability and efficient governance and proved vibrancy of Indian democracy, much essential for economic development. Priorities have been scripted as a 10 point agenda that includes being people oriented, building confidence in the bureaucracy, increasing investment, particularly in infrastructure, and implementing policy in time bound manner.
Within this environment of hope and enthusiasm your company has held on to the theme of capital preservation. Your Company continued to hold its investment in the following sectors viz., Media, Power, Banking, Non-Banking Finance Company and Real Estate.
Overview and Sectorial Performance of Investments
Your Company believes that it is well poised to take advantage of the major changes taking place in the cable and broadcasting industry. The lead position held by the Company's subsidiary in the cable industry, coupled with the HITS (Headend in The Sky) project that the media business of the Company is embarking on, will in the years to come ensure that your Company emerges as the 'best in class' content delivery platform that would reach a diverse pan-India TV audience.
IndusInd Media & Communications Limited (IMCL)
During the year, your Company's principal subsidiary i.e IMCL has successfully managed digitalization in the Phase I and II. IMCL has converted over 2.5 million analogue homes into digital homes .IMCL is present in over 36 cities in India including metro and major cities.
The industry is now shifting focus to areas of value added services, collection processes, etc. It has been now focussing on providing customer delight through provision of value added services, customer choice in viewership through packaging and bundling, ease in payments etc. On the operational side, introduce of pre-paid, online payment and similar mechanisms will eventually deliver higher ARPU and improve collection efficiencies.
Grant Investrade Limited (Grant)
The Company is also undertaking content delivery through an alternate technology with launch of HITS. Grant Investrade Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company has been granted permission by Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) to launch HITS. This would enable Grant Investrade Limited to reach through the entire geography of India. HITS would principally offer Infrastructure services of retransmission and backend services to hundreds of Local Cable Operators (LCOs) without disturbing their current status. HITS will be a cost effective platform for many LCOs. HITS project is expected to live by the fourth quarter of this fiscal and have a full year's operation in FY 16.
Corporate Social Responsibility
Mobile Medical Units
This year also, your Company has generously funded the Hinduja Foundation in implementing its mobile health care project targeting the rural poor in the tribal areas of Thane district. The project focuses on providing access to basic health care facilities for tribal people.This marks the continuation of our efforts to help the society at large in a tangible manner specially the underprivileged sections of the Society.
Your Company remains committed to creating content shareholder value through selective and judicious approach. The green-field coal based 1040 MW (2 x 520 MW) Thermal Power Project in Visakhapatnam is at the advanced stage of construction. Both Unit-I and Unit-II of the project have achieved Boiler Light-Up milestone and is expected to get commissioned this year. Power generated from the project shall be sold to state distribution companies at regulated tariff with assured returns, translating into value accretion for its investors. It continues to hold a 10% economic interest in the Project Company. Similarly, the other investments made in Non-Banking Finance Company and Banking space have continued to grow year ľon-year adding value to investor wealth.
The Company would pursue attaining a leadership position in content delivery no sooner the transition phase is complete and stability in business case improves. The Company would seek alternative modes of delivery through HITS platform to bring about disruptive change, the way business is done today. Combination of these strategies would bring it desired results and the Company would use its decades of experience to smooth transition through effective use of strategy and technology. With the advent of digital addressability, the Company would also seek to monetise its Media Investments by listing them bring value creation for its shareholders.
I would like to place on record my sincere appreciation of your unstinted support to the Company. I would also like to thank the Directors, Management and Employees for the good performance registered. Also my thanks go out to our Bankers, Auditors and Advisors for their help and guidance during the year to maintain the highest standards of corporate governance, a top priority for the group.