Economy & Politics

RTL Group sells its shares in BroadbandTV

Weakened by the crisis, the Luxembourg-based media group announced that it was splitting up shares for a total amount of 102 million euros. A sum that will allow it to “focus on the expansion of European digital companies”.

Anne-Sophie de Nanteuil

Weakened by the crisis, the Luxembourg-based media group has announced that it is parting ways for a total amount of 102 million euros. A sum that will allow it to “focus on the expansion of European digital companies”.

With a net profit strongly impacted by the crisis, RTL Group needs more than ever to replenish its funds. A little over a month after deciding to give up repatriating its activities to Belgium, the media group announced on Thursday that it had sold its shares in the Canadian online video company BroadbandTV for a total of 102 million euros.


RTL Group

The Luxembourg-based international broadcaster will provide an update on its activities on Thursday, as lockdown imposed in several European countries has frozen advertising and television productions that generate two-thirds of its revenue.


Majority shareholder (51%) since 2013, RTL Group had acquired it for 27 million euros and had injected 19.8 million euros, in the form of convertible bonds. If the difference between the purchase price and the resale price turns out to be positive, it will not fill the virus’ s cash hole. The Luxembourg-based media group has in fact divided its net profit by three, from 443 million last year to some 156 million for the first six months of this year.

The sale of its shares will nevertheless allow the group to “focus on the expansion of European digital companies”, according to the official statement. Namely, in streaming and advertising technologies. Indeed, if advertising revenues fell 40% in the second quarter, the audiovisual group saw an increase in the number of subscribers to its streaming platforms in Germany and the Netherlands with an increase of 45% over the six first months of the year.


Massive Einbrüche bei den Werbeeinnahmen sollen zu der Entlassungswelle bei RTL Belgium geführt haben.

The Belgian branch of the audiovisual group has finally decided to give up repatriating its activities to our neighbors. Consequence: it will not be able to benefit from the aid promised by the Wallonia-Brussels Federation.


While this increase does not compensate for the drop in advertising, it should nevertheless make it possible to avoid new measures in Luxembourg. As a reminder, the group’s financial situation forced RTL to set up, in August 2019, a social plan for 69 employees in Europe.


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