NENT Group’s ‘profitable growth at risk’ as Coronavirus hits

Anders Jensen

Nordic Entertainment Group (NENT Group) has said the spread of Coronavirus is “having an adverse impact” on the company’s performance and risks impacting profits.

The company, which is behind popular Nordic streamer Viaplay, said the spread of the virus “will put at risk NENT Group’s previously stated ambition to deliver profitable growth for the full year 2020.”

The pandemic has “negatively” impacted advertising demand, NENT added, which accounted for 26% of group sales in 2019.

The company revealed on Friday that it would be temporarily reducing the cost of sports package prices for its Viaplay service, following the postponement of various Nordic and international sports events such as the English Premier League.

The price for the Viaplay direct-to-consumer packages including sports will be reduced to the same price as the Viaplay TV and movies package SEK109 per month in Sweden; to DKK99 per month in Denmark; to NOK119 per month in Norway; and to EUR9.99 per month in Finland. Prices will apply for existing customers and are effective immediately.

NENT said it had not decided how long the price cuts would last but said that in the event of longer-term postponements or cancellations, the company would seek compensation from the sports rights owners under the terms of its contracts.

Anders Jensen, NENT Group oresident and CEO, said: “Our first priority is always to deliver world class products to our customers, which is why we have taken the decision to make temporary adjustments to our sports package prices.

“We are working hard to add short term alternatives in sports and even more of the great original productions, series, movies and kids’ content that make Viaplay the Nordic region’s leading streaming service and home of great entertainment experiences.

“We are also determined to find ways of dealing with the consequences of this global crisis, and minimising the impact on our business moving forward.”

NENT Group is in the midst of selling off the entirety of its non-scripted production and branded entertainment interests, and is also looking for an equity partner to help fuel its huge scripted output.

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