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The Kudelski Group, a provider of media content protection and value-added service technology, has published its 2014 first half results.
Group revenues in constant currency increased by 9.5 per cent over the same period in 2013, primarily driven by a patent cross-licence agreement with Cisco and by the consolidation of Conax starting in April 2014. Reported first half revenues increased by 6.1 per cent to CHF 395.3 million (€326m). Through the recently-announced sale of its NagraID subsidiary, the Group achieved another milestone in the process of streamlining its supply chain enabling a material reduction of smart card production costs. In addition, the Group announced on August 19th that it had signed an agreement with Oberthur Technologies for the divestment of its 50 per cent equity stake in the display card provider NagraID Security.
During the first half, the Group’s Integrated Digital TV (iDTV) business started to realise cost savings from these transactions.
The Group reported operating income of CHF 27.7 million, representing growth of 79.9 per cent over the first half 2013. Net income from continuing operations improved from CHF 10.7 million to CHF 18.3 million.
Cash flow generation further improved during the first half 2014, as the Group generated CHF 71.5 million of cash from operating activities, increasing by CHF 19.6 million as compared to cash flows generated during the first half 2013.
The Group’s acquisition of Conax on April 7th further strengthened its position in the digital TV conditional access market. With this acquisition, the Group adds to its portfolio a highly efficient provider of flexible, cost- effective content security solutions for telcos, cable, satellite, IP, mobile and terrestrial operators, enabling the Group to offer a full spectrum of solutions across a broad range of markets and customers.
Operationally, several key initiatives with Conax have been launched to increase growth and realise cost savings, including for example improved sourcing arrangements for smartcards and better leveraging SmarDTV’s solutions in the CAM business.
The complementary nature of the Group’s content security portfolios and the respective positioning of the NAGRA and Conax brands provide a solid foundation for accelerated cross selling of products such as OpenTV5 connectware, MediaLive multiscreen solutions and SmarDTV devices.
New wins and deplyments in integrated digital TV segment
OpenTV5 deployments are progressing according to plan with the commercial launch by Starhub in April, which has been well-received by consumers in Singapore.
NAGRA continued to strengthen its cooperation with the rapidly expanding Altice Group by providing its latest content security solution to enable the introduction of a new generation STB at Tricom and Orange Dominica, two operators recently acquired by Altice in the Dominican Republic, as well as at HOT, the main cable operator in Israel.
Numericable Group, the French cable operator that is in the process of acquiring SFR, France’s second largest telecom operator, selected NAGRA Media PRM and NAGRA Media Player SDK to enable its new Multiscreen application on Android and iOS. This new application will offer enhanced functionalities, such as the possibility to watch Live TV with a large selection of channels, PVR remote booking and access to V0D and Replay.
Euskaltel, the leading operator in Northern Spain, selected NAGRA MediaLive to launch its multiscreen service, called Edonon, which features a large number of live channels. The service, launched in June, enjoyed an impressive initial uptake and will progressively introduce more innovative content use cases enabled by the MediaLive platform throughout the coming months.
Cable & Wireless Panama selected NAGRA for its digital cable platform upgrade in Panama. NAGRA’s QuickStart and MediaLive solutions provide a turnkey platform for rapid deployment of multiscreen DTV services featuring a rich user experience across TV and companion screens.
TV Globo, Brazil’s largest content owner and terrestrial broadcaster, is relying on NAGRA MediaAccess for a new retail launch of a pay-TV service in 2014 on the SatHD platform currently serving 25 million free-to-air dishes.
Mexican operator Telecable has selected NAGRA for its next generation cable TV platform blending broadcast with advanced services such as catch-up TV, network PVR and TV Anywhere, relying on MediaLive and MediaAccess CAS/DRM and a state of the art user experience powered by OpenTV5 connectware.
Indonesia’s Linknet, the country’s leading cable TV provider, selected NAGRA for an end-to-end OTT solution for offering Pay-TV on open devices powered by NAGRA MediaLive and NAGRA MediaAccess PRM.
New Full year top line profitability and guidance
For the full year 2014, the Group expects iDTV seasonality patterns for operating income to be different than in previous years because first half 2014 results include the positive one-time effect of the Cisco transaction. As the Group will consolidate Conax for the full second half, iDTV revenues are expected to grow compared to the first half. In the Public Access segment, the Group expects a similar seasonality pattern as experienced in previous years, resulting in higher top line revenues and operating income for the second half 2014 as compared with the first half. On this basis, the Group is updating its total revenue guidance from CHF 865 to 880 million to a new range of CHF 895 to 915 million. Similarly, the Group raises its operating income guidance from CHF 55 to 65 million to a new range of CHF 60 to 70 million.