RTL Group Sees Signs of Ad Recovery


RTL Group reported stronger than expected ad revenues in the third quarter and is forecasting its total revenues for this year will be around €5.8 billion ($6.8 billion).

“Following a strong decline in the second quarter of 2020, TV advertising revenue across RTL Group decreased by only 2.1 percent in the third quarter compared to our previous guidance of around minus 10 percent,” said Thomas Rabe, CEO of RTL Group. “At the same time, we continued to gain advertising market shares, grow our streaming services and manage our costs. Assuming the economic recovery continues, we currently expect revenue of around €5.8 billion and an adjusted EBITA of around €720 million for the full year 2020, driven by the strength of Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland. We also expect to propose a dividend for 2020, in line with our stated dividend policy.”

Overall revenues fell by 1.5 percent year on year to €1.4 billion ($1.7 billion) in the quarter, while revenues for the first nine months were down 11.8 percent to €4.05 billion ($4.8 billion), mainly due to COVID-19’s impact on the ad market in Q2.

Fremantle’s revenues for the first nine months fell by 15.3 percent to €1 billion ($1.2 billion), mainly due to the postponement of productions as a result of the pandemic.

Ad revenues were €2.1 billion ($2.5 billion), including €1.7 billion ($2 billion) from television and €210 million ($248 million) from digital. Streaming revenue from TV Now and Videoland gained 24 percent to €124 million ($146 million), thanks to the increased number of subscriptions. RTL Group’s digital revenues slipped by 1.6 percent to €743 million ($876 million).