The Italian television group Mediaset, controlled by the family of the former head of government Silvio Berlusconi, announced on Monday that it recorded net profit in 2020 down 26.8% to 139.3 million euros, in a context heckled by the coronavirus pandemic.
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This result is slightly lower than the expectations of Factset analysts who expected a net profit of 143 million euros. The profit is 39.2 million for activities in Italy and 178.7 million for those in Spain, said a press release from Mediaset. Turnover is also down, to 2.63 billion euros against 2.92 billion a year earlier, including 1.8 billion in Italy and 836 million in Spain.
"These figures reflect the decline in the advertising market in both countries due to the economic and health crisis"
, comments the group. However, advertising revenue rose 6.1% in the first quarter of 2021, according to Mediaset, which specifies that this is the third quarterly increase in a row.
Mediaset also announced its intention to move its head office from Milan to the Netherlands, to Amsterdam, in particular to
“strengthen the capacity”
of the group to raise capital.
The Italian group specifies, however, that the company will remain listed on the Milan Stock Exchange and that its tax office will still be in Italy.
Conflict between Mediaset and Vivendi
Mediaset announced last Monday its intention to appeal the judgment of the Milan Civil Court over the long-standing dispute between it and French media giant Vivendi. The court ordered Vivendi to pay 1.7 million euros in damages to Mediaset for reneging on a partnership agreement concluded in April 2016, an amount which however remains well below the 3 billion euros claimed by the Italian group. This agreement, denounced by Vivendi three months later, provided for the purchase by Vincent Bolloré's group of 100% of the Mediaset Premium pay-TV channel bouquet. The judges ruled unfounded the complaint of Mediaset which accused Vivendi of having artificially brought down the action of the Italian group by announcing the rupture of theagreement to then increase its capital at a lower cost.