German media giant Bertelsmann back in profit

29th March 2011, Comments 0 comments

German media giant Bertelsmann said Tuesday it returned to profit in 2010 thanks to a "clear recovery" in sales, improved economic conditions and cost cuts.

"2010, the year of our 175th anniversary, was one of Bertelsmann's most successful years to date. We quickly overcame the economic crisis and advanced our businesses considerably," chief executive Hartmut Ostrowski said.

Particularly strong were its European television unit RTL Group and magazine subsidiary Gruner and Jahr, both helped by an upswing in advertising and expansion in all core areas, privately owned Bertelsmann said.

Sales rose 4.5 percent to 15.8 billion euros ($22.3 billion) while operating income rose almost a third to 1.9 billion euros. Group profit attributable to shareholders improved to 476 million euros from a loss of 82 million euros.

This was despite the group being hit by 356 million euros in exceptional items.

"If the economic expectations for our core geographic markets are met, Bertelsmann expects moderate revenue growth in 2011, in line with the overall development of the economy," it predicted.

Operating income is forecast to be "stable at its current high level," while group profit will rise, it said.

© 2011 AFP

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