RTL quarterly revenues rose to $1.4 billion, fueled by streaming and TV advertising

Despite slight declines in Fremantle's global content business, the group signaled optimism for the projected €6.6 billion revenue for the year and continued investment in streaming and content production.

8 MAY 2024

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Luxembourg-based media company RTL Group, owner of Fremantle, reported a 2.6% surge in revenues, reaching a staggering €1.3 billion ($1.4 billion) in the first quarter of 2024. This growth trajectory was predominantly steered by the buoyancy in TV advertising and its streaming sector.

While overall revenues soared, the picture wasn't entirely uniform across all segments. Fremantle, the group's global content arm, experienced a slight setback with revenues dipping by 9.2% to €395 million. RTL attributed this decline to "timing effects in the U.K., Italy, and Germany," clarifying that revenue recognition for certain shows like the German rendition of “Idols” would be delayed to the second half of the year.

Nonetheless, the overall narrative painted a rosy picture for RTL, a stark contrast to the preceding financial year marked by a sluggish advertising market. In the first quarter of 2024, the group witnessed a remarkable uptick in total advertising revenue, soaring by 10.1% to €686 million. TV advertising revenue alone surged to €528 million, reflecting a promising 10.1% increase.

The streaming arm of RTL continued its impressive growth trajectory, with paying subscribers witnessing a staggering 24% year-on-year surge, reaching six million. This translated to a notable 41% increase in streaming revenue, soaring to €86 million. Distribution revenue also witnessed a healthy uptick, climbing by 8.6% to €88 million.

In Germany, RTL's TV channels made significant strides in advertising market and audience share gains, widening the gap between them and ProSiebenSat1 by eight percentage points.

Looking ahead, RTL anticipates further growth in 2024, projecting revenues to soar to €6.6 billion. The surge is expected to be propelled by heightened revenue from RTL Deutschland, driven by the exponential growth in streaming revenue, and Fremantle, buoyed by a robust recovery in the U.S. market and strategic acquisitions.

CEO Thomas Rabe expressed confidence in the company's trajectory, stating: "RTL Group has started strongly and in line with our expectations into 2024. We have strengthened our leading audience and advertising positions in Germany and continued the dynamic growth of our streaming business."

As the company braces for an eventful second quarter, marked by the broadcast of UEFA Euro 2024 matches by RTL Deutschland and Groupe M6, alongside the launch of M6+ in France and the release of highly anticipated series by Fremantle, including "The Responder," "Nightsleeper," and the 19th season of "America’s Got Talent," RTL Group remains poised for continued success in the ever-evolving media landscape.