H1/2021: RTL Group reports strong revenue growth, a record Group profit and more than 3 million paying streaming subscribers – significant progress in building national cross-media champions

RTL Group announces its reviewed results for the six months ending 30 June 2021. 

H1/2021: Financial key performance indicators up strongly

CEO Statement

“Strong operating performance and major consolidation moves will create significant value for RTL Group’s shareholders.”

Statement from Thomas Rabe, Chief Executive Officer of RTL Group:

“In the first half of 2021, RTL Group performed strongly. Adjusted EBITA and Group profit were up significantly, driven by the recovery of TV advertising markets and the growth of our content production and streaming businesses. This, combined with active portfolio management, led to a record Group profit of €929 million. Following RTL Group’s strong performance in the first six months, we have raised our outlook for the full year 2021 and now expect an Adjusted EBITA of around €1,050 million including streaming start-up losses and €1,200 million before streaming start-up losses.

Over the past months, we have made significant progress in the execution of our national champions strategy. Major moves in Germany, France, the Netherlands and Belgium will create significant value for RTL Group’s shareholders and put us in a strong position to compete with the global tech platforms.

In addition, we will accelerate the expansion of our content production business, Fremantle – both organically and via M&A – targeting €3 billion revenue by 2025. Fremantle will continue to focus on scripted, non-scripted and increasingly on factual shows and documentaries. The acquisitions of Abot Hameiri, Eureka and Nent Studios so far this year were first steps.

With all these changes, the time has come to reposition our core RTL brand with a new identity and a clear set of principles. We will strengthen RTL as Europe’s leading entertainment brand that stands for positive entertainment and independent journalism, as well as inspiration, energy and attitude. We will rebrand TV Now to RTL+ in Germany in autumn 2021 and will start the international roll-out in 2022.”


Strengthening RTL Group’s core – creating national media champions

Boosting growth businesses


RTL Group has raised its outlook for 2021. This outlook assumes that the economic recovery from Covid 19 will continue in 2021, as vaccination programmes progress and no new lockdown measures are put in place.


2021e new

2021e old






Adjusted EBITA




Streaming start-up losses




‘Adjusted EBITA before
streaming start-up losses’





Key financials

Key financial figures (January to June 2021)




Per cent





Adjusted EBITA




Adjusted EBITA margin (%)








Adjusted EBITA




Significant special items




Impairment and reversals of investments accounted for using the equity method




Impairment of goodwill and amortisation and impairment of fair value adjustments on acquisitions of subsidiaries




Re-measurement of earn-out arrangements and gain/(loss) from sale of subsidiaries, other investments and re-measurement to fair value of pre-existing interest in acquiree




Fair value measurements of investments












Net financial income/(expense)




Income tax expense








Group profit




Attributable to:




– RTL Group shareholders




 – Non-controlling interests








Basic and diluted EPS (in €)






The full report for the interim results 2021 will be available to download at http://www.rtlgroup.com/results-H1-2021

Adjusted for portfolio changes and at constant exchange rates, for 2019 additionally adjusted for the wind down of StyleHaul. Further details can be found in Key performance indicators on page 9 of RTL Group’s Interim Report 2021
2 Streaming revenue includes SVOD, TVOD and in-stream revenue from TV Now and Videoland/RTL XL
3 Revenue generated across all distribution platforms (cable, satellite, internet TV) including subscription and re-transmission fees
4 Operating cash conversion rate reflects the level of operating profits converted into cash. Further details can be found in Key performance indicators on page 11 of RTL Group’s Interim Report 2021
5 The net cash/(debt) excludes current and non-current lease liabilities. Including these, net debt amounts to €-166 million (31 December 2020: €-148 million). See Key performance indicators on page 12 of RTL Group’s Interim Report 2021
6 The following Gruner + Jahr assets are not part of the transaction and will remain with Bertelsmann: DDV Mediengruppe (Sächsische Zeitung), Territory, AppLike Group and G+J’s 25 per cent shareholding in Spiegel Gruppe
7 The antitrust authorities (Autorité de la Concurrence) and media regulator (Conseil Supérieur de l'Audiovisuel)