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Tyro Alma Media taking off

Nordic media company posts $260 mil net sales for year

AMSTERDAM — Alma Media, the Nordic territories’ newest media company, posted net sales of $260 million for the year — up from $248 million a year earlier, though net profit slid from $26 million in 1997 to $16 million in 1998.

The company was formed in April through the merger of MTV Corp., the owner of Finland’s largest commercial TV company, MTV3, and the territory’s second-largest publisher, Aamulehti. The pre-merger figures reflect combined results of the two companies.

Alma owns all of MTV3 and has the largest stake, 23%, in Swedish TV channel TV4.

In a breakdown of sectors, MTV, the broadcasting division of Alma Media, slid to $99 million in net sales for the first half of 1998, after $103 million in the first half year of 1997.

No net profit figures were available by sector but operating profits in broadcast in the same time period also slipped from $12 million to $10 million, “mainly due to costs associated with the purchase of stakes in TV4 Sweden,” Ahti Martikainen, a spokesman for Alma, told Daily Variety.

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