Europe’s largest commercial broadcaster RTL Group expects its full-year operating profit to drop as its German operations no longer can make up for other areas suffering from the economic crisis in Europe.

The company, which is majority-owned by media conglomerate Bertelsmann, said earnings before interest, tax and amortisation (EBITA) dropped 13.9 per cent from the same period last year to €506 million in the first six months of the year.

RTL, which runs 46 TV channels and 29 Radio stations in nine countries, said the German TV advertising market grew slightly, while the French, Dutch and Belgian markets were down.

Anke Schäferkordt and Guillaume de Posch, Joint Chief Executive Officers of RTL Group, commented: “Following an overall stable first quarter, advertising market conditions across Europe became more challenging. We reported a healthy EBITA margin of 18.0 percent. Looking to the remainder of 2012, we maintain our cautious and flexible approach for the business, in particular as there is no visibility yet on the development of the TV advertising markets during the important fourth quarter. With the phasing of productions, we anticipate stronger second half earnings for our content business FremantleMedia. We again expect the Group to deliver a solid level of EBITA, although not at the record level of 2011.”