Viaplay boosts MTG pay-TV business

February 13, 2014 10.39 Europe/London By Chris Dziadul

mtg-logo-landscapeMTG’s net sales in the Nordic pay-TV market in 2013 amounted to SEK5,335 million (€607.9 million), compared to SEK5,088 million a year earlier.

The figure for Q4 amounted to SEK1,368 million, up from SEK1,286 million a year earlier, with sales growth at constant FX continuing to reflect Viaplay subscriber growth and rising ARPU, as well as the Danish TV3 Sport channels.

However, operating costs increased significantly due to the ongoing investments in premium movie and sports content, the development of the Viaplay online pay-TV service, and the full consolidation and expansion of the Danish TV3 Sport channels business.

MTG expects to report a higher EBIT margin for its Nordic pay-TV business for the full year 2014.

As also previously indicated, MTG’s exclusive coverage in Sweden of the Sochi Winter Olympics will boost sales and adversely impact profits during the first quarter.

MTG saw stronger growth in its Emerging Markets pay-TV business, with net revenues in the full year and fourth quarter amounting to SEK1,146 million (SEK1,062 million in 2012) ands SEK322 million (SEK271 million) respectively.

It notes that the Q4 results eflected the growth in the mini-pay wholesale channel business in general and the Russian market in particular, as well as growth in the satellite subscriber bases in the Baltics, Russia and Ukraine.

Operating costs increased following investments in premium content and the development of the HD Premium package offering, which began in Q4 2012. Segment operating profits were up significantly y-o-y and q-o-q and did include positive one-off items.

MTG continues to expect the segment to report rising profitability levels for the full year 2014.

The wholesale mini-pay channel business added over 8 million subscriptions y-o-y and almost 1 million subscriptions q-o-q. The combined satellite pay-TV subscriber bases grew by 24,000 q-o-q following growth in all markets in the seasonally strong pre-Christmas sales period but was down 3,000 compared to last year.

MTG as a whole saw net sales up 14% in Q4 at constant FX and up 6% on an organic basis. Its net income amounted to SEK261 million, compared to SEK378 million a year earlier.