MFE H1 revenues steady despite economy
September 28, 2022
Despite a context of geo–political and economic crises, characterised by increased inflation, an energy
emergency and a fall in consumer confidence, MFE – MediaForEurope has reported its accounts in the first six months of 2022 were not significantly affected thanks to “an immediate response by management”.
Consolidated net revenues were up compared with the same period of last year and, despite a challenging Q2, the Group’s advertising sales outperformed the market thanks to the Mediaset TV networks, both in Italy (a more than 40 per cent share in the commercial target in prime time) and in Spain.
Consequently, also through a careful control of costs and despite the surge in inflation and the cost of energy, MFE managed to achieve a positive net result for the half year, as well as a sharp decrease in indebtedness and significant free cash flow.
Highlights of the Group’s performance in the first half of 2022:
• Consolidated net revenues recorded a slight increase to €1,388.5 million, compared with €1,387.2 million in the first half of 2021. In Italy, revenues rose to €974.6 million, compared with €963.7 million in the same period of the previous year, an increase of 1.1%. In Spain, revenues came to €415.2 million, compared with € 423.6 million in 2021.
The ability of gross advertising revenues to absorb the impact of the crisis proved decisive. In Italy, total sales amounted to €976.4 million, in line with the €976.9 million of 2021: a positive trend compared with the –2.8 per cent decline recorded by the market (Nielsen data) which made it possible to further increase Mediaset’s share of the TV system (around 57 per cent). In Spain, gross advertising revenues amounted to €385.8 million compared with €406.1 million in 2021, in line with the local TV market (–5 per cent, Infoadex data).
• Total consolidated operating costs (personnel, other operating costs, amortisations and depreciations of rights and other fixed assets) came to €1,276.5 million, compared with €1,188.5 million for the first half of 2021.
Costs in Italy amounted to €957.5 million, compared with €869.1 million in 2021, a result which, in addition to energy price increases, was affected by contracts not present in the first half of 2021 as they were activated in the second half for the year (three–year rights to the Coppa Italia and Supercoppa, as well as fees for advertising sales for the Serie A managed by the Group for third parties). In Spain, costs came to €319.3 million, which is stable compared with the €319.8 million for the same period of the previous year.
• Operating result (EBIT) is positive and totalled €112.0 million, compared with €198.7 million in the same period of 2021.
• Consolidated net profit was once again positive at €84.6 million. The figure for the same period of the previous year was €226.7 million, which resulted also from a pro–quota capital gain of €86.7 million euros generated by the subsidiary EI Towers (40 per cent) by the sale of Towertel.
• Consolidated net financial position at 30 June 2022 amounted to €630.7 million net debt, down from €869.2 million at the beginning of the period. Excluding liabilities recognised starting from 2019 and pursuant to IFRS 16, and residual financial debt deriving from the acquisition of the Group’s stake in ProsiebenSat.1 SE, adjusted net financial debt was equal to €487.3 million (€ 689.1 million at 31 December 2021).
• Free cash flow for the period amounted to €270.2 million, essentially in line with the €274.7 million of the excellent first half of 2021.
• TV ratings. In the first six months of 2022, the Mediaset networks confirmed their clear leadership
in the commercial target, both in Italy and in Spain.
In Italy, all channels saw improved results compared with the first half of 2021 and Mediaset’s national leadership in the commercial target was consolidated in all the main time bands, with a peak share of 40.9 per cent in Prime time. Canale 5 retained its position as Italy’s most popular channel in the 15–64–year– old target across the whole day (19.4 per cent).
In Spain, the Group’s networks maintained their absolute leadership in the 24 hours with a 29.5 per cent share in the commercial target. Telecinco confirmed its position as the most popular Spanish channel in the commercial target across the whole day (14.1 per cent).