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Telecinco tops European rivals

Cost efficiencies, aud growth boost profits

MADRID — Thanks to “Big Brother” and a booming TV ad market, Spanish publishing group Telecinco is claiming the crown as the most profitable private broadcaster in Europe. Telecinco posted net profits for last year of Pta 25.7 billion ($141 million), up 40% from 1999, off net revenues of $558 million.

Telecinco prexy Alejandro Echeverria attributed the large profit margins to cost efficiencies, a more popular demo and a growth in auds (which left Telecinco with an average 22% market share for the year).

The last two factors were boosted hugely by the runaway success of the Spanish version of “Brother,” which boosted Telecinco’s gross TV ad revenues by 15.5% to $590 million. TV advertising rose a total of 9% in Spain last year.

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