Despite the difficulties experienced by the entire international media sector, Italian commercial broadcaster Mediaset reported a significant increase in consolidated net profit of €471 million, compared with €90 million in 2017.
The result was impacted by the IPO of tower unit Ei Towers, generating a capital gain of €498.2 million. The total contribution to profit from discontinued operations was €520 million.
Net revenues reached €3.4 billion (from €3.55 billion), but net financial debt fell from €1.39 billion to €736 million.
Revenues in Italy amounted to €2.42 billion (€2.55 billion), while in Spain they reached €981.6 million (€996.3 million).
The impact of advertising sales was significant in both countries. Mediaset España confirmed its leadership with gross revenues €963.6 million (€969.7 million in 2017), while in gross TV advertising revenues in Italy grew from €2.09 billion to €2.11 billion. As a result, Mediaset’s market share in Italy in 2018 rose to 39.0 per cent from the 38.3 per cent of the previous year.
On the TV viewership side, Mediaset’s networks improved their viewing figures compared to 2017 and continue to maintain an ample leadership in both markets.
In Italy, Mediaset is the leader in its commercial target with a 34.8 per cent share in prime time and 33.5 per cent over 24 hours. In Spain, Mediaset España’s TV networks are the absolute leaders in over 24-hours with a 28.8 per cent share.
Over the past year, Mediaset launched two new channels in FTA thematic channels in Italy – Focus and 20 – enabling the broadcaster to increase its share in the FTA segment to 7 per cent in prime time.
Mediaset has decided to postpone until July the decision on the distribution of the dividend hoping that some of the options of partnerships materialize in the coming months.