Bertelsmann says profits down in first half

29th August 2014, Comments 0 comments

German media giant Bertelsmann downgraded its full-year forecasts on Friday after net profit fell in the first six months.

"Our guidance for the full year is a significant increase in revenues and a stable operating (profit) at a high level," chief financial officer Judith Hartmann said in a statement.

"Our net income will remain slightly below the previous year's strong level."

Previously, Bertelsmann had been pencilling a rise in net profit for the whole of 2014.

In the six months to June, the group's bottom-line fell by 39 percent to 254 million euros ($335 million), but largely because the previous year's figures had been boosted by windfall gains.

Underlying or operating profit edged 0.4 percent higher to 1.015 billion euros and sales were up 6.7 percent at 7.846 billion euros.

"This revenue growth was driven, in particular, by the strategic transactions of the past 18 months," Bertelsmann explained.

The transactions included the combination of Penguin with Random House, the acquisition of the financial services company Gothia and the e-commerce service provider Netrada, and the acquisition of full ownership in the BMG music rights company.

"The first six months of 2014 went satisfactorily for Bertelsmann. The significant increase in revenues is a testament to the effectiveness of our strategy, and last year's big investments are paying off," said chief executive Thomas Rabe.

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© 2014 AFP

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