1999, a record year for CLT-UFA group : strong growth in revenues / earnings up in core businesses / new activities successful

Luxembourg, March, 31st 2000 – The Board of Directors of CLT-UFA met today and approved the company financial statements for 1999.

CLT-UFA had a record year in 1999, with a net result, group share, of  415 million (see press release of March, 10, 2000) and consolidated revenues reaching  3.211 billion, up 5% from  3.063 billion in 1998. Growth was driven by buoyant advertising markets benefiting RTL Television in Germany and both M6 and RTL Radio in France.

Earnings up in traditional business lines

Operating income in traditional businesses rose 25% to total  205 million. RTL Television remained market leader in Germany, with advertising revenues of  1,947 million and  pretax earnings up by more than 34%. RTL II nearly tripled earnings and raised its audience share through popular access-prime-time programs.

In France, M6 again reported exceptional growth with net profit up 27% despite additional investments in pay-TV channel TPS, in which it holds a 25% interest. 1999 was also a very good year for RTL Radio, which confirmed its leadership of the fiercely competitive French market. The overall French radio family (RTL, RTL 2, FUN Radio) has registred an increase of 47% of its earnings.


 millions 1998 1999 change
Television  2,333 2,436 +4%
Radio 244 264 +8%
Content 486 511 +5%

TOTAL 3,063 3,211 +5%

Television remains the group's largest single business by far, accounting for nearly 76% of consolidated revenues.


 millions 1998 1999 change
Germany 1,954 2,053 +5%
France 501 571 +14%
The Netherlands 370 369 ---
Belgium 157 159 +1%
Luxembourg and other 81 59 -27%

TOTAL 3,063 3,211 +5%

  • Success for new businesses

Super RTL broke even during the year, while both VOX and Channel 5 cut losses by more than 50%. In Hungary, RTL Klub consolidated its markets position to become number one in its TV market. In Poland, CLT-UFA now holds 100% of RTL 7, and can thus move to optimize its positions.

  • Balance sheet strong base for new investment

Disposal of the CLT-UFA group's 45% interest in German pay-TV channel Premiere in 1999 reduced indebtedness by approximately  800 million. This leaves net consolidated financial debt at  87 million — down 90% compared 1998. This puts the group in a positive situation to make further developments as it has been already the case in early 2000 with the announced stake increase in VOX, M6 and Channel 5.

CLT-UFA is the leading European broadcasting Goup with shareholdings in 40 television and radio stations, most of which are market leader (RTL Television in Germany, RTL radio in France, HMG in the Netherlands). CLT-UFA also holds interests in numerous production and broadcasting rights distribution companies (including UFA Film – Film and TV Productions in Germany and UFA Sports in Europe).


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For further information please contact:
RTL Group
Markus Payer
Head of Media Relations
Tel: (+352 42142-5020)