Falling ticket sales hits profits

BERLIN — Constantin Film said on Tuesday its operating profits were halved in the first quarter to Euros 1.8 million ($2.4 million) after a record year in 2006, even though Q1 revenue rose 15% to Euros 83 million ($112 million).

The German market leader, a subsidiary of Swiss media conglom Highlight Communications, blamed falling earnings on a 10% drop in cinema ticket sales in the first quarter after they had recovered strongly in 2006.

Constantin said the unusually warm winter weather and early arrival of spring this year — which enticed potential cinemagoers into the beer gardens and cafes instead — as well as a dearth of Hollywood blockbusters, had hit their bottom line.

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