Published 2014-05-07

Schibsted results 1st quarter 2014

Schibsted’s classified sites perform very well. Schibsted Sverige has improved considerably, while Norwegian media houses experience profit decline.

Today, Schibsted Media Group released its Q1 2014 report, showing operating revenues of NOK 3.71 billion. The Online classifieds segment increased its revenues underlying with 14 percent, 19 percent excluding Spain. The gross operating profit (EBITDA) was NOK 410 million (297 million). Excluding the Online classifieds Investment phase, the EBITDA increased to NOK 551 million from NOK 521 million in the corresponding quarter in 2013.

“I am satisfied with the Q1 2014 where our online classifieds operations have performed very well. Schibsted Sverige has improved considerably, not least as a result of good development for the digital activities in Schibsted Growth. Our Norwegian media house operations have faced an environment where print advertising has declined at a higher pace than what we previously experienced. This has resulted in a profit decline,” CEO Rolv Erik Ryssdal says.

“The progress of our online classifieds sites is broad based. In Norway, Sweden and France our revenues grow with double digit rates. In total, our online classifieds revenues grew by 14 percent, underlying. This is satisfying in the light of our decision to reduce monetization in Spain,” Rolv Erik Ryssdal says.

“We continue to build traffic positions which will be a basis for long term revenue growth, and in Q1 we invested NOK 141 million in Online classifieds New Ventures. In addition, we invest in joint ventures and associated companies, of which a significant part of the investments is made in Brazil, where we see very strong traffic growth in the market,” Rolv Erik Ryssdal says.

“In our media houses the transition to online proceeds at high speed. It is particularly good to see that our three largest media houses VG, Aftenposten and Aftonbladet all report fairly stable revenues and margins in Q1. This is a result of strong online growth – both from advertising and subscription sales – combined with a strict cost focus. In the period ahead, we will continue developing our digital positions and at the same time adapt the cost base to the market conditions. In this way we strengthen our ability to develop world class digital media houses for the future,” CEO Rolv Erik Ryssdal says.

Highlights of Q1 2014
(Figures in brackets refer to the corresponding period in 2013. Underlying figures are adjusted for currency effects and acquisitions and divestments.)

  • Underlying growth for Online classifieds excluding Spain 19 percent. Total underlying Online classifieds growth was 14 percent, whereas the underlying growth for the Group overall was 2 percent.
  • EBITDA of NOK 551 million (521 million) excluding investments in New Ventures in Online classifieds. Total Group EBITDA NOK 410 million (297 million).
  • Online classifieds EBITDA margin of 27 percent (18%), 40 percent (42%) excluding investments in New Ventures
    • Continued growth and high margins in Norway, Sweden and France
    • Building future positions through investments in traffic growth across the portfolio. Strong growth in key performance indicators like number of new ads in the investment phase sites, including Brazil
    • Focus on mobile product innovation
    • Positioning to capture the real estate potential in France.
    • Acquisition of in Spain expected to be closed in Q2.
  • Mixed development in Media houses.
    • Strong online positions secure stable revenues and firm margins for VG and Aftonbladet.
    • Accelerated print advertising decline for subscription newspapers. Further cost reduction measures under planning. Good development for digital subscriptions
    • Steady growth and margin improvement for personal finance services
Q1 Q1 FY
 (MNOK) 2014 2013* 2013*
Operating revenues       3,710       3,587     14,870
Gross operating profit (EBITDA) 410 297 1,777
EBITDA margin 11 % 8 % 12 %
Gross operating profit (EBITDA) ex. Investment phase         551         521       2,647
EBITDA margin ex. Investment phase 15 % 15 % 18 %
Profit (loss) before taxes         101         107       1,490
Adjusted Earnings per share (EPS)       (0.69)        0.55        3.90
*) Restated figures

Press conference

Schibsted invites to an analyst and press conference at Apotekergaten 10, Oslo, 7 May 2014 at 09:00 CET. The presentation will be transmitted live as a video webcast on

A conference call with Q&A linked to the Q1 2014 numbers will take place 7 May 2014 at 14:00 CET. Please dial in at the following numbers:

International: +44(0)20 3364 5381

From Norway: 800 56054

Conference code: 7758387