Fremantle Revenues Up 21% As Super-Indie Inches Toward €3B Turnover Target
Fremantle’s revenues rose 21% to €2.3B ($2.44B) and profits were up 15% last year as the super-indie inches toward its target to hit €3B ($3.2B) turnover by 2025.
Significant investment – both organically and via acquisitions – is to come across all genres this year, according to owner RTL Group, following a year in which Fremantle’s adjusted EBITDA increased by nearly 15% to €162M.
Fremantle’s growth helped German-headquartered RTL’s turnover to rise by 8.8%, although overall adjusted EBITDA for the group fell 6%.
American Gods and Planet Sex producer Fremantle was set the ambitious revenue target last year and went on a major buying spree in 2022, acquiring the likes of Normal People producer Element Pictures, Jimmy Savile: A British Horror Story indie 72 Films and Italian producer Lux Vide. It also struck talent deals with big names including Angelina Jolie, All Quiet on the Western Front’s Edward Berger and, most recently, The Case Against Adnan Syed director Amy Berg.
A recent Deadline investigation revealed the company has spent around €250M on acquisitions over the past two years.
Successes such as America’s Got Talent and Apple TV+’s Mosquito Coast were cited in today’s results, along with the delivery of 17 films, which more than doubled the number from the prior year.
“To reach [the €3B target] and keep up with the increasing demand for content, RTL Group will invest significantly in Fremantle – both organically and via acquisitions – in all territories across drama and film, entertainment and factual shows and documentaries,” RTL said.
RTL’s turnover for the full year to December 31 2022 increased to €7.2B but adjusted EBITDA fell to €1.08B, while adjusted EBITDA margin fell slightly to 15%. Profits in the RTL Nederland segment rose by an impressive 50% but RTL Deutschland fell by 15%.
In January 2023, the Dutch competition regulator blocked RTL’s two-year-old plans to combine its operations with John De Mol’s Talpa Network, while French-owned network Groupe M6, which saw EBITDA fall by 7.6%, also had a merger with fellow broadcaster TF1 blocked.
RTL CEO Thomas Rabe said 2022 had been a “strong year although we faced an unprecedented number of external challenges.”
He added: “With our families of TV channels in Germany, France and the Netherlands continuing to generate high operating profits, and our global content business Fremantle reporting record results, our Adjusted EBITA before streaming start-up losses remained stable, on the same record level as last year.