German print and digital media firm Axel Springer AG (AXELF.PK) reported Wednesday a higher second-quarter profit, mainly due to a growth in its digital media activities. The company confirmed its expectations of a slight rise in earnings for full year 2012 on higher half year earnings.
Mathias Döpfner, chief executive officer of the company said, "Our Digital Media's EBITDA margin exceeded 20 percent during the first half year, underscoring the successful development of our digital business activities. The online classified portals bundled into Axel Springer Digital Classifieds are particularly profitable."
Assuming that general economic conditions do not experience a significant deterioration, the company still expects to generate a single-digit percentage increase in its total revenues in fiscal 2012. Also, Axel Springer anticipates that the Group's EBITDA for the fiscal will be slightly higher than the prior year.
Further, the company continues to anticipate lower earnings in the print business and substantially higher earnings in the digital business.
In the second quarter, net income attributable to shareholders increased to 80.2 million euros from 79 million euros in the previous year. On a per share basis, earnings were 0.81 euros, up from 0.80 euros a year earlier.
Consolidated net income, on an adjusted basis, improved to 100.2 million euros or 0.87 euros per share from 95.4 million euros or 0.85 euros per share in the prior-year quarter.
Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, or EBITDA, rose 6.4 percent to 172.2 million euros.
The Group's quarterly revenues grew 5.4 percent to 831.4 million euros. Digital Media revenues increased 19.8 percent, and advertising revenues improved 13 percent.
For the half year, the company posted net income attributable to shareholders of 140.9 million euros or 1.43 euros per share, higher than 134 million euros or 1.36 euros per share in the prior year.
Adjusted consolidated net income grew 5.5 percent to 177.7 million euros. Half-yearly revenues increased 6.2 percent to 1.62 billion euros, mainly due to higher revenues in the Digital Media segment. Adjusted for consolidation effects, total revenues were up 2.5 percent.
In early June, Ringier Axel Springer Media AG, a 50:50 joint venture of Axel Springer AG and Swiss Ringier AG, agreed with Polish media company TVN S.A to acquire 75 percent of shares in TVN's unit Onet.pl S.A., for 956.25 million Polish zloty or about 217.5 million euros.
Axel Springer shares are currently trading at 35.68 euros, down 3.96 percent on Frankfurt's Xetra.
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by RTT Staff Writer
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