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Vocento records net profit of 47.2 million euros in the first nine months



Madrid, 13 Nov 2009.-Leadership of the Press and on the Internet, progress made in the implementation of the audiovisual strategy, and advertising which has outperformed the market average, have enabled Vocento to end the first nine months of 2009 with revenues of 553.6 million euros and a net profit of 47.2 million euros, despite the difficult economic environment and the general fall in advertising spend.

In this period, Vocento has cut operating expenses by 81.5 million euros (-13.2%), which has resulted in an improved level of efficiency that has offset the drop in advertising and has led to EBITDA of 18.7 million euros, when adjusted for restructuring costs, which is in line with the level of the same period last year, of 20.7 million euros.

In an economic environment which has had a significant impact on companies in the media sector in Spain and in Europe, Vocento stands out from its competitors because of its solid financial position, with cash of over 138 million euros and net financial debt of 45 million euros, which is enabling the company to implement its transformational and cost reduction measures, and which facilitates the execution of the strategic plan.

The financial position of the Company has been reinforced in this period by the sale of the 5.1% stake in Telecinco, which has generated an income of 95.3 million euros and pretax capital gains of 70.1 million euros.

9M09 results

Million euros

VOCENTO

PRISA

UNEDISA

TELECINCO

ANTENA 3

Total revenues

554

2.429

372

432

496

var% vs. 9M08

(13%)

(21%)

(20%)

(41%)

(21%)

Advertising revenues

194

628

138

395

402 1

var% vs. 9M08

(25%)

(22%)

(31%)

(41%)

(23%)

EBITDA ex restructuring costs and capital gains

19

507

3

89

36

Financial position

 

 

 

 

 

Million euros

VOCENTO

PRISA

RCS

TELECINCO

ANTENA 3

Net Financial Position Dec08

(93)

(5.044)

(1.147)

(26)

(140)

Net Financial Position 9M09

(45)

(4.973)

(1.122)

(177)

(235)

Source: Companies. Note 1: Advertising revenues of Antena 3 TV

Leadership of Print Media

In the first nine months of the year, Vocento has continued to be the circulation leader of the print media, with an increase in circulation sales of 1.4%.

The regional newspapers remain the undisputed leaders of circulation, with market share of 26.1%, according to OJD data for the period. ABC closes the gap on its most immediate competitor to 30,000 copies

Meanwhile, ABC, where promotional spending has been cut by 14.6%, is the only national daily to increase its circulation in the first nine months of the year (+2.6%), compared to the general fall in the circulation of its competitors, whose average circulation has dropped by 10.9%. This sustained increase over the last two years has enabled ABC to close the gap on its most immediate competitor, from 103,220 copies in September 2007 to just 30,300 copies in September 2009.

In terms of advertising revenues, the print media of Vocento have outperformed the market average of a decline of 28% (according to the i2p Arce report for the first nine months), with ABC experiencing a fall of 22.9% and the regional media a fall of 25.8%.

In the free press, the daily Qué! has improved its adjusted EBITDA by 5.5 million euros, after cutting costs by 47.5%.

The continued improvements of Vocento supplements, which are reflected in the positive performance of their readership data, have enabled the Sunday supplement XL Semanal to improve its share of advertising in the period from 30.2% to 32.3%.

Improving efficiency in the audiovisual area

In the audiovisual area, Vocento has again improved efficiency levels, with revenues of 82 million euros and a rise in adjusted EBITDA of 9.3 million euros, thanks to strict cost controls and the positive performance of the national DTT channels.

Disney Channel has consolidated its position as the leading thematic channel on digital television, with a share of 3.6% according to TNS Sofres , at a time when consumption of DTT has reached a share of 45% of national television consumption.

These data confirm the viability of the business model in National DTT, and highlight the significant opportunity for the Company of the imminent change in the audiovisual landscape following the analogue switch-off.

A highlight in this period has been the strategic agreement with Viacom, which has enabled Vocento to launch the first private sector network of regional channels in Spain, with a free-to-air offer that includes, since October, schedules based on successful content (Nickelodeon, MTV, Paramount Comedy, and others) as well as regional programming of a factual nature.

In addition, Punto Radio has increased its coverage in the period, obtaining eight new licenses, three in Madrid, two in Castilla la Mancha and three in Extremadura. Efficiency measures and cost controls have enabled an improvement in adjusted EBITDA of 3.1 million euros.

Finally, it is important to note that in the area of audiovisual production and movie distribution, the Company has been able to absorb part of the decline in revenues, with a rise in the EBITDA margin, adjusted for non-recurring items, to 23.5%.

Leadership on the Internet

In the last twelve months Vocento has increased its online readership by 13%, according to N Nielsen data for October, to 9.3 million unique users in all business areas (Online Editions, Verticals, Directories and Classifieds). In this period, the Internet area has recorded a rise in advertising revenues of 25.8%, well ahead of the market, at around 2.6%.

In the general good performance of the Group portals, a highlight has been the real estate site Pisos.com, which has reached the number three position in its segment, after attracting 856,000 unique users in less than one year, and an increase of 165% in recent months, well above its category, which is increasing by a pace of 15%.

In addition, a highlight in this period has been the launch of the digital archive of ABC.es, which includes five million documents and three hundred years of history. This innovation has sent ABC.es to the number three position in the ranking of national portals, which an increase of 93% in the last twelve months, with 1.6 million new users and a readership of 3.6 million.

Other highlights of the period include the incorporation of 11870.com, a powerful social network which enables sites and services to be discovered and recommended; the professional network of Infoempleo.com, which facilitates job searches; the growth the social network based on news of Qué.es which has grown by 218% in the last year, and the good performance of Dalealplay.com, a portal which is exclusively dedicated to the upload and download of videos in Spanish and which has grown by 40%.

Vocento

Vocento is a leading multimedia company in Spain, thanks to the strength of its brands, which have a significant presence in all areas of information and entertainment, including the press, supplements, magazines, television, radio, audiovisual production, movie distribution, and the Internet.
The national, regional and local positioning of Vocento, its permanent commitment to innovation, and the strength of its brands, enable the Company to extend its reach beyond its competitors, covering over 24.6 million people, according to the EGM. For more information, go to Vocento.com.

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