Ströer Media SE was able to repeat the excellent results achieved in 2014 in the first quarter of 2015. This strong momentum is enabling to us to drive forward our strategic realignment and position the Group as an integrated and increasingly digital media company. The new Digital segment made a decisive contribution to Ströer now being one of the largest national media marketers.
Ströer got off to a very good start in fiscal year 2015. Revenue was up 11% year on year in the first quarter to EUR 161.8m. This corresponds to organic revenue growth of 8.4%. This growth was mainly fueled by the Digital segment, which saw its revenue climb by more 33% on the prior-year quarter to EUR 41.7m. The Out-of-Home Germany segment reported organic growth of 6.5% and contributed a total of 96.1m to revenue. The Out-of-Home International segment generated revenue of EUR 29.7m in the first quarter of 2015, up slightly due to currency effects.
The upward trend in revenue also had a positive effect on operational EBITDA, which shot up almost 60% year on year to EUR 26.3m. The operational EBITDA margin stood at 15.9% in the first quarter compared with 11.1% in the prior year.
Adjusted consolidated profit or loss also improved significantly year on year in the first quarter by EUR 4.4m and came to EUR 4.5m.
Despite considerable investments and acquisitions in the first quarter totaling EUR 25m, Ströer successfully kept the leverage ratio (net debt to operational EBITDA) stable at 1.9x as of the end of the first quarter of 2015 on the back of the good operating results compared to the end of 2014. The syndicated loan agreement was replaced by a new credit facility which led to a further reduction in financing costs in the low single-digit million range. The term of the facility runs until 2020.
In light of the business development in 2015 and the improved outlook for the rest of the year, Ströer Media SE increased its guidance for fiscal year 2015 and now expects organic revenue growth in the mid to upper single-digit percentage range as well as operational EBITDA of at least EUR 180m.
“We took the strong momentum of our record year 2014 with us into 2015. Our key financials show a clearly positive development. We are an integrated and increasingly digital media company. We are now already generating a quarter of total revenue from digital operations. In the medium term we expect to see digital revenue increase to 50%,” says Udo Müller, CEO of Ströer.
At the beginning of the fiscal year, Ströer aligned its internal control system and thus also the structure of its segments. In this context, the public video business was transferred to the Digital segment. At the same time, the Turkey segment and Other segment were consolidated under the Out-of-Home International segment.
Revenue in the Out-of-Home Germany segment was up 6.5% in the first quarter of 2015 to EUR 96.1m. Revenue growth was primarily driven by the expansion of national and regional sales activities. The Ströer Group’s wide variety of digital and analog products also had a strong positive impact on revenue. This is reflected in the very positive development of operational EBITDA, which was up 32.8% in the first quarter to EUR 19.1m. The EBITDA margin also increased significantly to 19.8% in the first quarter.
The new custom-selected Digital segment comprises all the Group’s digital business activities, including online advertising and public video. It constitutes a cornerstone of the Group’s corporate strategy and is a primary driver of growth within the Group. Segment revenue grew by more than 33% in the first quarter of 2015, an increase of EUR 41.7m. This increase can be largely attributed to our strong organic growth. Operational EBITDA for the Digital segment almost doubled in the first quarter to just under EUR 9.5m. The operational EBITDA margin stood at 22.7% compared with 15.6% in the prior year.
The OOH International segment was shaped by a challenging market environment in the first quarter. However, operational EBITDA improved significantly year on year and rose by around 55%. The operational EBITDA margin stood at 4.3% in the first quarter and was up almost two-fold on the prior year.
The Group’s financial figures at a glance
In EUR m
OoH Germany (2)
by product group
Street furniture (2)
Digital (Online) (3)
Organic growth (%) (4)
Gross profit (5)
Operational EBITDA (6)
Operational EBITDA margin (%) (6)
Adjusted EBIT (7)
Adjusted EBIT margin (%) (7)
Adjusted profit or loss for the period (8)
Adjusted earnings per share (EUR) (9)
Profit or loss for the period (10)
Earnings per share (EUR) (11)
Free cash flow (13)
31 Mar 2015
31 Dec 2014
Total equity and liabilities (1)
Equity ratio (%)
Net debt (14)
Employees (number) (15)
(1) Joint ventures are consolidated at-equity - according to IFRS 11
(2) Joint ventures are consolidated proportional (management approach)
(3) Revenues of segment Ströer Digital and digital OoH revenues of other segments
(4) Excluding exchange rate effects and effects from the (de-)consolidation and discontinuation of operations (Joint ventures are consolidated proportional)
(5) Revenue less cost of sales (Joint ventures are consolidated at-equity - according to IFRS 11)
(6) Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization adjusted for exceptional items (Joint ventures are consolidated proportional)
(7) Earnings before interest and taxes adjusted for exceptional items, amortization of acquired advertising concessions and impairment losses on intangible assets (Joint ventures are consolidated proportional)
(8) Adjusted EBIT before non-controlling interest net of the financial result adjusted for exceptional items and the normalized tax expense (Joint ventures are consolidated proportional)
(9) Adjusted profit or loss for the period net of non-controlling interests divided by the number of shares outstanding after the IPO (42,098,238) plus time-weighted addition of the shares from the capital increase (6,771,546) on 3 June 2013
(10) Profit or loss for the period before non-controlling interest (Joint ventures are consolidated at-equity - according to IFRS 11)
(11) Actual profit or loss for the period net of non-controlling interests divided by the number of shares outstanding after the IPO (42,098,238) plus time-weighted addition of the shares from the capital increase (6,771,546) on 3 June 2013
(12) Including cash paid for investments in property, plant and equipment and in intangible assets (Joint ventures are consolidated at-equity - according to IFRS 11)
(13) Cash flows from operating activities less cash flows from investing activities (Joint ventures are consolidated at-equity - according to IFRS 11)
(14) Financial liabilities less derivative financial instruments and cash (Joint ventures are consolidated proportional)
(15) Headcount of full and part-time employees (Joint ventures are consolidated proportional)