Spain’s Grupo Prisa reported substantially higher sales in Latin America during the first nine months of 2012. The higher Latin American sales did not offset a substantial advertising revenue decline in Prisa’s core Spain market

Grupo Prisa owns U.S. Hispanic broadcaster V-Me and radio company Grupo Latino de Radio as well as text book publisher Santillana. The Spanish company registered a net loss of US $41 million vs. earnings of US $23 million during the first nine months of 2011.

The difficult economic situation in Spain contrasts with strong growth in Latin America. Advertising revenues overall decreased by 9,9% over the first nine months of 2012 compared to the same period of 2011. However, Latin American ad revenues increased by 15,1% and now amount to 24,9% of overall Grupo Prisa’s ad revenues. EBITDA (Earnings before depreciation and amortization) from Latin American operations amounted to 34,8% of total Prisa EBITDA.

The Pay TV television segment revenue in Spain grew by 4,2% in large part thanks to newly obtained soccer broadcast rights.

Text book publisher Grupo Santilana increased revenues by 6%, buoyed by a strong Latin American performance (+10,8%).

Digital revenues continued to increase (+14,1%). Digital revenues on traditionally print platforms had a particularly high increase (+25,2%) or 19,5% of overall revenues of traditional print platforms.

Cost Cutting

Grupo Prisa continues to have a high debt load of more than US$ 4 billion. In order to guarantee debt interest payments in the midst of the Spanish economic slump, Prisa has been cutting costs in most of its business units. Operating costs declined by 3,9% during the January – September 2012 period.

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