×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Vivendi’s 2016 Results: Core Operating Profits Drop Due to Canal Plus Losses, Universal Music Provides Bright Spot

PARIS — Vivendi, the media conglom helmed by French billionaire Vincent Bollore, had a tough year in 2016.

Due to losses at Canal Plus’ channels in France, Vivendi’s core operating profits fell to 724 million Euros ($766 million), a 23 percent year-on drop. Its revenues, meanwhile, remained stable at $11.4 billion.

A bright spot in Vivendi’s 2016 finances was Universal Music Group’s (UMG), which proves once again to be vector of growth for the company. Universal Music saw its revenues go up 4.4 percent to $5,5 billion, bolstered by a 57.9 percent spike in subscriptions and streaming revenues. Vivendi cited the success of new albums by Drake, Rihanna, Ariana Grande, and the Rolling Stones. Universal Music Group’s income from operations totaled $727 million, a 10.7 percent year-on increase.

As anticipated, Canal Plus Group, which includes Canal Plus’s pay TV outfit and Studiocanal, the film and TV production and distribution banner, dropped 4.7 percent to $5.5 billion in 2015.

Canal Plus’s pay-TV operations fell by 6.1% due to its plummeting subscriber base, which lost 492,000 subs in 2016 and totaled 5.2 million subscribers by year-end. Canal Plus Group’s income from operations fell to $320 million, compared to $573 million in 2015, while its core operating profit totaled $254 million, compared to $480 million in 2015.

Vivendi explained the market fall was “mainly due to the decline in the individual subscriber base in mainland France (excluding wholesale agreements) and content investments.”

The losses at Canal Plus’ channels in France mounted to $422 million, compared to $279 million in 2015.

Vivendi, however, signaled Canal Plus was on an upward trend thanks to the recent launch of six new packages and its carriage deals with Free and Orange. Signed in the last quarter of 2016, these deals have brought in an additional 2.9 million subscribers to Canal Plus, allowing the paybox’s premium channels to be included in the set-top boxes of Orange and Free.

Canal Plus Group’s free-to-air channels, particularly C8 (previously called D8), pulled a 6.9% increase in advertising revenues. Vivendi said “C8 was the most watched DTT channel in France and the fifth most watched channel overall at the end of 2016.”

Studiocanal’s revenues fell to $440 million, a 26.1 percent year-on drop. Vivendi pointed out 2015 had been particularly strong due to the success of several movies, including animated features “Paddington” and “Shaun the Sheep,” as well as high-profile English-language movies such as “Imitation Game,” “Legend,” and “Hunger Games.”

While it struggled in France, Canal Plus’s paybox continued to expand overseas, where it pulled 6.25 million subscribers, a 5.7 percent year-on increase. Africa proved the fastest-growing continent for Canal Plus, totaling 2.8 million subscribers, 20 percent more than in 2015.

Looking ahead, Vivendi predicts its recent strategic moves will allow the company to increase its revenues by more than 5% and core operating profit by 25 percent in 2017.

More Biz

  • David Rhodes CBS News

    CBS News Faces New Challenges in Weeks Ahead

    At CBS News, President David Rhodes has a series of important decisions to make that could affect the trajectories of some of TV’s best-known news programs. As its parent company seeks to move forward from recent seismic events – the ouster of its former CEO, Leslie Moonves; a corporate probe into its workplace culture; and [...]

  • Listen: Sarah Bernhardt and the Birth

    Listen: How Sarah Bernhardt and Eleonora Duse Helped Create Modern Celebrity Culture

    They were pioneers in the business of superstardom more than a century ago. Behind the scenes, legendary actors Sarah Bernhardt and Eleonora Duse were also entrepreneurs who ran their own companies and controlled every aspect of their careers. The new biography “Playing to the Gods: Sarah Bernhardt, Eleonora Duse and the Rivalry That Changed Acting [...]

  • Charter Communications logo

    Charter Reaches $174 Million Settlement on Internet-Throttling Fraud Suit

    Charter Communications agreed to a settlement valued at $174.2 million to resolve a lawsuit alleging the U.S.’s second-biggest cable operator defrauded broadband customers by failing to deliver promised internet speeds. According to the terms of the settlement with the New York Attorney General’s Office, Charter will pay $62.5 million in direct refunds to 700,000 active broadband [...]

  • Making a Murderer

    'Making A Murderer' Detective Sues Netflix for Defamation

    A retired sheriff’s detective sued Netflix for defamation on Monday, alleging that the hit series “Making a Murderer” falsely suggested that he planted evidence to frame a murder suspect. Andrew Colborn filed suit in Manitowoc County Circuit Court in Wisconsin, alleging that he had been subject to “worldwide ridicule, contempt and disdain” since the docuseries [...]

  • Yael Stone Geoffrey Rush

    'OITNB' Actress Yael Stone Accuses Geoffrey Rush of Sexual Harassment

    In a New York Times article published Sunday, “Orange Is the New Black” actress Yael Stone alleged that Geoffrey Rush harassed her numerous times while they both worked on a theater production in 2010. She said he exposed himself to her, sent her sexually suggestive text messages, and used a mirror to spy on her [...]

  • Laura Donnelly

    CAA Signs 'The Ferryman' Actress Laura Donnelly (EXCLUSIVE)

    CAA has inked Laura Donnelly for representation. Donnelly, who was most recently represented by ICM Partners, won the prestigious Laurence Olivier Award for best actress this year for her performance in Jez Butterworth’s play “The Ferryman,” directed by Oscar and Tony winner Sam Mendes. The production has also received two more Olivier Awards, including best [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content