Antena 3 posts stellar results

Spanish commercial web rofits up 83%

MADRID — The Antena 3 Group, whose crown jewel is the Spanish commercial broadcaster Antena 3, posted outstanding first-half results Tuesday, with net profits increasing 83% to Euros124.3 million ($149.4 million), 8% more than total full year earnings in 2004.

The Antena 3 Group, which also houses radio net Onda Cero and cinema ad company Movierecord, reported revenues of $615.3 million for Jan.-June, a rise of 24.5%. Operating profit margins stood at 38.7%, compared with 28.6% for first-half 2004.

Antena 3 buoyant performance can be put down largely to broadcaster Antena 3’s growing slice of a still vibrant TV ad market: Antena 3 ad revs rose a standout 23% over first-half 2005 to $520.6 million with the web taking 28.4% of Spain’s total TV ad market. Channel’s net profit rose 93.8% to $142.3 million.

The broadcaster’s flagship shows include primetime neighbors comedy “Aqui no hay quien viva” plus its primetime movie slots, including the recent and successful broadcast of “Spiderman,” which grabbed a 30.1% market share.

“CEO Maurizio Carlotti’s management has been successful, taking advantage of the ratings decline at [pubcaster] TVE to snare part of its audience, and controlling costs pretty well. And Spain’s TV ad market continues to grow. All this powers up results,” said Glenn Spencer Chapman, an analyst at Ibersecurities.

“One key question now is how results will be affected by the future ad cycle. Growth could well slow somewhat,” Chapman added.

TV ad spend in Spain saw spectacular first-half hikes, increasing 14.7% over the same period in 2004 to reach a total $1.86 billion.

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