Sweden’s MTG surges on strong profits

Sweden's MTG surges on strong profits
MTG CEO Hans-Holger Albrecht (Photo: MTG)
Swedish media concern Modern Times Group has reported a pre-tax profit of 566 million kronor ($74 million) for the second quarter 2009, exceeding market forecasts.

The firm reported a profit of 621 million kronor for the corresponding period of 2008, excluding a realized capital gain of 1.16 billion kronor from the sale of the DTV group.

MTG, which is part of the Stenbeck family firm, reported a turnover of 3.58 billion kronor, in comparison with 3.31 billion in the second quarter 2008.

Analysts had forecasts a pre-tax profit of 443 million kronor and a turnover of 3.53 billion kronor, according to a Reuters poll.

“The business climate remained difficult in the second quarter with pressure on advertising budgets in all countries and significant falls in revenue among the TV companies,” MTG CEO Hans-Holger Albrecht wrote in the interim report.

According to Albrecht the company’s open-TV operations continue to claim viewers and market share, at the same time as its pay-TV operations are increasing sales and customer spend (ARPU).

All of MTG business areas reported a profit during the second quarter.

MTG stock was up nearly 7.5 percent in late-afternoon trading on the Stockholm exchange, having risen 18.00 kronor to 259.50 kronor per share.

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