Viaplay Records Q1 Subscriber Gains


Overall revenues at Nordic Entertainment Group (NENT) slipped by 2 percent in Q1 2020, with advertising and studios revenues falling while subscription revenues rose thanks to gains at Viaplay.

Revenues were down 2 percent to SEK 3.66 billion ($363.9 million). Subscription revenues rose 5 percent, but ad revenues at NENT fell by 13 percent and studios revenues were down 17 percent with productions on hold due to COVID-19. NENT delivered a net income of SEK 157 million ($15.6 million) in the period.

Viaplay reported a total of 1.7 million subs at the end of Q1, adding 314,000 since Q1 2019 and 102,000 since the previous quarter. For the year, Viaplay projects a net addition of 400,000, with further geographic expansion on the planner for 2021.

“The strong momentum we had built up in 2019 continued into the start of 2020, but the spread of the coronavirus has had a material impact on our operations from March and onwards,” said Anders Jensen, president and CEO. “Our organic sales were down 2 percent, with the very healthy growth in the number of Viaplay subscribers almost fully offsetting the adverse effects on our advertising and studios businesses. Our operating profits before IAC were down compared to last year and, given the uncertainty caused by the current circumstances, we are withdrawing our profitable growth outlook for 2020.”