RTL-owned production giant Fremantle says that out of some 200 of its TV productions that were closed down during the Covid-19 lockdowns, around 80 per cent have restarted or been completed.
RTL Group CFO Björn Bauer, speaking at Deutsche Bank’s 2020 European TMT Conference, told delegates that 2021 should see demand being strong from streaming platforms globally and 2021 should see a good rebound (on output).
Bauer addressed the recent comments about Merger & Acquisition speculation.
Deutsche Bank, in its note to clients, said: “In terms of recent management comments related to merging national streaming platforms, [he] indicated that this needs to be looked at in two ways – firstly a common technological infrastructure that can be leveraged to build streaming platforms would be an advantage. Here RTL referred to their own Bedrock streaming technology which they use in Belgium, Croatia, and Hungary and will also use for the Salto platform (a venture between M6, TF1 and France Televisions in France) when it is launched in October. Bedrock will also share components with TVNow in Germany and is being used in the Netherlands. Secondly, RTL is not looking at significant cross-border consolidation but within each market, may look at small to medium-size targets either in broadcasting or content production.”
Deutsche Bank also commented on RTL’s advertising outlook, saying: “In Q2, RTL indicated that Q3 could be down ~10 per cent but we get the impression they may outperform this estimate. Booking behaviour has become short term but there seems to be late advertising money flowing into the TV medium across its markets and they are hopeful this trend continues in September. However, it is still too soon to estimate what the full year may be like given the uncertainty. As a reminder, in Q3, July and August collectively account for just half the quarter while September accounts for the rest. As a result, advertising behaviour in September and the rest of the year would be crucial for overall earnings.”