Ad Market Woes Hit RTL Group Results


While revenues were down by almost 7 percent at RTL Group in the first nine months of the year, the company reported a 21 percent boost in streaming revenues as paying subs rose to 6.2 million.

Total revenues at RTL Group from January to September 2023 fell by 6.9 percent to €4.66 billion ($4.97 billion) as a result of “significantly lower” TV advertising revenue from broadcasting businesses and decreased Fremantle revenues. Fremantle’s revenues were down 7 percent in the first nine months to €1.53 billion ($1.6 billion).  Ad revenues fell by 8.5 percent to €2.3 billion ($2.46 billion). Streaming revenues, however, rose 21 percent to €236 million ($252 million).

Q3 revenues fell by 10.3 percent to €1.6 billion ($1.7 billion), with ad revenues down by 1.8 percent to €766 million ($818 million) and Fremantle’s revenues down 21 percent to €527 million ($563 million).

RTL Group now expects its TV advertising revenue to decline by a mid-single-digit percentage in the second half of 2023 and is also expecting lower revenues at Fremantle.

“Despite challenging market conditions, we are pursuing the transformation of our businesses with significant streaming and technology investments,” said Thomas Rabe, CEO. “Our streaming business grew strongly, with around 1.5 million net paying subscribers added over the past 12 months. In October, we started a major marketing campaign for Germany’s first all-inclusive entertainment app, RTL+, comprising video, audio and text in one app. As expected, the decrease in TV advertising revenue has slowed down significantly in the third quarter and we have seen strong performance across the group in September. Going into the fourth quarter, however, the European advertising markets are turning out to be softer than we expected, and despite countermeasures, we have had to adjust our outlook.”