Bertelsmann has also raised its earnings forecast for 2021 thanks to a positive development of the TV and book businesses.
The media, services and education company announced on tuesday in gutersloh that it expects a consolidated profit of just under two billion euros for the full year. In spring, the forecast had been put at more than one billion euros.
Consolidated net income in the first half of the year was around 1.37 billion euros (first half of 2020: 488 million euros). Bertelsmann spoke of the highest value since the sale of the AOL europe shares in 2002. In addition to the positive development of earnings, the group also cited the increase in capital gains as the reason for the rise. The operating result (EBITDA) rose to around 1.42 billion euros. In the first half of 2020, the figure was just under 1 billion. Bertelsmann spoke of a record figure.
Three earnings pillars
Group CEO thomas rabe said: "in particular, our three main revenue pillars, RTL group, penguin random house and arvato, posted significant gains."Group revenues climbed 10.7 percent to 8.7 billion euros compared to the first half of 2020.
Rabe cited the advertising technology business spotx in the u.S., which had previously been part of the RTL group, as the most important example of the company’s profits from enchantment. In addition, bertelsmann investments has sold a number of investments or floated them on the stock market.
The advertising markets have recovered for a long time after a corona dip in the first half of 2020. Advertising lots play an important role at bertelsmann in the media sector with the RTL group, in which the group holds a majority stake and which accounts for the largest item in the balance sheet, and the hamburg-based magazine publisher gruner + jahr ("stern," "geo"), a wholly owned subsidiary of the group.
The respective operating results and revenues of both media companies were higher than the figures for the first half of 2020. In response to a dpa inquiry, rabe said that the german business was doing extremely well. "The ad markets have recovered significantly and will show a positive development this year."
Strategy rough champions
It has long been known that RTL in germany will take over the german magazine business from gruner + jahr and thus the core business. Bertelsmann has long pursued the strategy of major champions, i.E. Major companies, in the european media markets, with the aim of being able to counter international streaming platforms such as netflix or amazon at a regional level in individual countries.
RTL group, which is headquartered in luxembourg and operates TV and streaming services in a number of countries, has had several results on consolidation plans in recent months. In france, RTL group holds shares in the M6 television group. This is to merge with the french broadcasting group TF1 by the end of 2022. RTL group then wants to be the second-largest shareholder in the new group. In the netherlands, RTL nederland plans to merge with john de mol’s media company talpa network in 2022. In belgium, on the other hand, RTL wants to divest its TV and radio stations. RTL group’s main markets are germany, france and the netherlands.