X Factor US, American Idol weigh on FremantleMedia results


American-Idol-Disney-attraction-2FremantleMedia has blamed the cancellation of X Factor US and lower revenue from American Idol for a decline in full-year sales and profit.

The RTL-owned production and distribution giant posted 2014 revenue of €1.486 billion (US$1.64 billion) compared with €1.525 billion in 2013. Full-year EBIDTA profit tumbled 16.9% year-on-year, taking the total to €113 million.

The company said the year-on-year declines were “due to the cancellation of X Factor US, lower revenue from American Idol and increased investments in digital businesses and the content pipeline”.

It added that through 2014 its prodcos around the world launched 48 formats and its distribution arm shopped over 20,000 hours of content.

In terms of number of hours of FremantleMedia content on air, the US remained the key territory for the company with 1,086 hours ahead of Germany with 753 hours, France with 461 hours and the UK with 326 hours.

The content company also touted its digital credentials with 200 digital channels now up and running and its content claiming nine billion views on digital platforms and services in 2014.

The FremantleMedia results were broken out as parent group RTL reported full-year earnings. Revenues of €5.8 billion and EBIDTA profit of €1.145 billion were fractionally down at the pan-European group.

RTL said: “Higher revenue from Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland and from acquisitions was offset by lower advertising sales in France, the effect of the disposal of the French e-commerce service Mistergooddeal along with lower revenue from FremantleMedia and UFA Sports.”

It noted its success in the digital realm and said its digital strategy was starting to pay dividends. Digital revenue was up 26.6%at €295 million. RTL also said that across its footprint of channels and businesses, its catch-up services, MCNs and websites generated 36.4 billion online video views.

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