First quarter earnings increase 15-fold

BERLIN — Kinowelt Medien has announced its highest first-quarter profits ever thanks to a big boost in licensing deals.

The Munich-based company’s pre-tax profit of DM 10.7 million ($5.9 million) reflects a huge 1,550% increase over 1998, when the company was hit by the costs of preparing to go public. Kinowelt’s revenue increased by 113% to $45 million.

The company’s dramatic results stem from its recently established licensing arm, Inlight Entertainment and Merchandising, which alone brought in $8.6 million.

Strong showings by films such as “Rush Hour,” “The Celebration” and “Black Cat, White Cat,” which were distributed by Kinowelt subsidiary Arthaus, also helped boost profits.

The Kinowelt group’s after-tax profits were $2.47 million, up 1,130% over last year.

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