Recession continues to pound at VAS provider Tanla Solutions‘ revenues: this quarter witnessed a 61.5% drop in net profits to Rs. 112.07 million on a quarter on quarter basis. Profits are 80% lower than the Rs. 564.07 million recorded in Q1-09.
Tanla offers a range of services including content and campaign management, an MMS gateway, phone billing through Premium SMS for mobile applications and M-Raga, a mobile radio service as well as 3G services. It caters to both Indian and international media and telecom firms, deriving most revenue from UK and Indian markets, followed by Dubai.
The premium SMS business was expected to start picking up this quarter after a downfall to 6.7 million premium SMS transactions in UK last quarter from 8.9 million in Q3-09.
The company invested Rs. 92.4 million into research and development this quarter.
Tanla added an Israeli mobile software developer for its License Manager and mobile payments solutions. Its web access manager solution was used by a global handset manufacturer. Tanla also launched a white-labeled maps shop for S40 platform for an unnamed premium handset manufacturer.
This quarter, both overseas and domestic revenues have crashed, halving gross revenues year on year. Total revenues has also dipped 38.5% from last quarter to Rs. 882.16 million.
Overseas Revenues, Nokia & The Michael Jackson Tour
Tanla’s CREAT platform, an integrated multi-serve platform that helps companies connect to global mobile operators and sell digital content and non-digital service was licensed by 6 UK media firms and 5 in South Africa. CREAT was also used to to organise erstwhile Michael Jackson’s comeback tour in UK “This is it”, which was set to kick off in July. It was canceled and organisers are suffering losses, reports IBTimes. We wonder if Tanla was been affected as well, apart from the lost opportunity.
Tanla also launched commercial 3G Video services for a leading mobile operator in Sri Lanka.
Nokia uses Tanla’s mobile application rights management product in all its smart phones, and Tanla suffered when Nokia withdrew its map business from India after a spat with operators about insufficient revenue share. Tanla was delivering the maps via premium messaging services. Despite that, Tanla released the S40 license manager platform, used by Nokia for a broad range of mass market mobile devices. Nokia was also a client of mobile payments company Tanla Oy (previously Openbit) in which Tanla upped its stake to 90% in June.
Last quarter, Tanla announced it would launch new initiatives on mobile platforms such as Blackberry, Android and Linux but no announcements have been made as yet.
Revenues from UK bottomed out last quarter due to a change in regulations by by PayPhonePlus, the telecom regulatory authority, and have not improved. Income from Tanla’s international clients fell 39.4% to Rs. 839.08 million.
Its license manager solution is used by mobile security firm Smobile Systems and Russian ISV (independent software vendor) Sole Traders amongst others. In UK, clients include CFL Media, British Fight Club, hip-hop record label HA Entertainment and B4U. It had also deployed a 3G video service platform with an unnamed UK based media broadcasting firm.
Domestic Business Takes A Hit
In the quarter, Tanla’s license manager was implemented by a handset manufacturer in India, 2 national general entertainment channels were signed on as clients for its Video Juke Box software and CREAT bagged a whopping 28 clients in the media sector. Despite this, revenues from India fell sharply (43.7%) to Rs. 21.92 million in the quarter.
It also launched an outbound dialer service in 7 circles for a pan-India mobile network. Its joint venture with ZED Worldwide has been named TZ Mobile Pvt Ltd. The entity is expected to ready its services by September.
In India, Tanla’s products Video Jukebox and CREAT are used by the media and broadcast industry. Some clients are Zoom, National Geographic, Zee TV and regional channels HMTV, iNews, SakshiTV, Studio N and Maha TV. Its voice portal is used by Loop Telecom (BPL) and Reliance Communications. Bulk SMS suppliers One97 and MPower use its service delivery platform. It had also tied up with MTNL to offer video calling for the latter’s 3G ‘Jadoo’ customers. Read about Jadoo here and here.
Content providers, including telemedia and direct-to-consumer services contributed 37% while video chat providers accounted for 7% of its revenues last quarter.