Kinowelt halves profit forecasts

Co. attributes perf to Alliance Atlantis share sale

BERLIN — German indie Kinowelt Medien reported Monday a first-quarter loss before interest and tax of 30.3 million euros ($26 million) and halved its 2001 operating profit forecasts, driving share prices down to an all-time low.

News comes only a month after the company said it was on track to meet profit forecasts of $47 million. It now expects operating profits to sink below last year’s $21 million.

Company said the results were due to a loss of $14 million incurred from its sale of shares in Alliance Atlantis earlier this year. It also cited currency factors, restructuring and loss provisions, as it wrote off some $23 million due to special factors. Sales in its TV division were down 33% to $8 million. But new TV deals in the notoriously difficult German market are expected in the second quarter.

Overall sales were on the up. Revenues in the first quarter rose by 61% to $61 million. Business in Kinowelt’s core theatrical unit more than tripled to $21 million. Meanwhile, home entertainment was up by 60% to $16.5 million.

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