Highlight Communications AG

DGAP-News: Highlight Group in line with planning after six months

DGAP-News: Highlight Communications AG / Key word(s): Half Year
Results
Highlight Group in line with planning after six months

11.08.2015 / 17:48

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Highlight Group in line with planning after six months -
Sharp appreciation of the Swiss franc against the euro impacts results of
operations


  - Consolidated sales of CHF 126.7 million below the previous year's
    figure as expected

  - EBIT margin improves from 4.5% to 5.7%

  - Consolidated net profit for the period at CHF 0.6 million due to
    currency effects

  - Forecast re-confirmed for fiscal year 2015

In the first half of 2015, the Highlight Group generated sales and earnings
that were in line with expectations for the current year. Compared to the
first six months of the previous year, however, the company's results of
operations were significantly impacted by the sharp appreciation of the
Swiss franc against the euro as a result of the cap of 1.20 EUR/CHF having
been lifted by the Swiss National Bank. In the Highlight Group's financial
statements for the first half of the year,this change in the currency
relation was reflected in a CHF 5.0 million rise in financial expenses,
among other effects.

Group development in the first half of 2015

  - At CHF 126.7 million, consolidated sales were down on the previous
    year's level (CHF 216.3 million), mainly due to lower sales in the Film
    segment. This decline reflects the fact that, in contrast to the
    previous year, no international Constantin Film production was released
    in the first half of 2015. In addition, the Film segment had benefited
    in the previous year from extremely high sales figures in home
    entertainment exploitation.

  - Consolidated operating expenses declined by CHF 87.0 million from CHF
    238.8 million in the first six months of the previous year to CHF 151.8
    million in the reporting period. This decrease was primarily due to
    amortization, depreciation and impairment, which fell by CHF 55.6
    million to CHF 21.2 million.

  - As the decline in consolidated operating expenses was weaker overall
    than the reduction in consolidated sales, EBIT at CHF 7.2 million
    remained below the previous year's level (CHF 9.7 million). The EBIT
    margin (EBIT as a percentage of consolidated sales) for the first half
    of the year improved despite this decline from 4.5% in the previous
    year to currently 5.7%.

  - Consolidated net profit for the period, which was affected by the
    significant rise in financial expenses among other factors, amounted to
    CHF 0.6 million (previous year's period: CHF 5.9 million). This
    pronounced decline was mainly attributable to the change in the EUR/CHF
    currency relation as described above.

  - CHF 0.8 million of this profit is attributable to Highlight
    shareholders (previous year's period: CHF 5.6 million), corresponding
    to earnings per share of CHF 0.02 (previous year's period: CHF 0.13).

  - At CHF 81.9 million, consolidated equity (including non-controlling
    interests) was CHF 25.0 million lower than at the end of 2014 (CHF
    106.9 million). This decline is firstly due to exchange rate
    differences of CHF 14.4 million resulting from the translation of the
    equity of those subsidiaries whose functional currency is not the Swiss
    franc. Secondly, dividends totaling CHF 10.3 million were distributed
    in the reporting period.


Targets for fiscal year 2015

Based on the positive operating prospects in the second half of the year,
particularly with regard to the theatrical releases of "Fack Ju Göhte 2"
and "Er ist wieder da", the Highlight Group is continuing to forecast
consolidated sales of between CHF 310 million and CHF 330 million and a
consolidated net profit for the period attributable to shareholders of
between CHF 14 million and CHF 16 million for the Highlight Group in 2015
as a whole.

The German interim report as of June 30, 2015 will be available for
download at www.highlight-communications.ch starting from this evening, and
the English version from August 18, 2015 at the latest.





Highlight Group at a glance
Group figures according to IFRS

in CHF million                         6M 2015          6M 2014 Change in %
Sales                                    126.7            216.3       -41.4
EBIT                                       7.2              9.7       -25.8
Net profit for the period                  0.6              5.9       -89.8
Net profit attributable to                 0.8              5.6       -85.7
shareholders
Earnings per share (CHF)                  0.02             0.13       -84.6
Segment sales
Film                                     102.7            190.0       -45.9
Sports- and Event-Marketing               22.1             24.8       -10.9
Other Business Activities                  1.8              1.5        20.0
Segment result
Film                                       0.9              3.8       -76.3
Sports- and Event-Marketing                9.7             10.2        -4.9
Other Business Activities                 -0.6             -1.4        57.1

in CHF million                      June 30,2015    Dec.31,2014 Change in %
Balance sheet total                      373.7            361.6         3.3
Equity                                    81.9            106.9       -23.4
Equity ratio (%)                          21.9             29.6     -7.7pts
Current financial liabilities             60.5             81.3       -25.6
Cash and cash equivalents                102.1             44.8       127.9







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11.08.2015 Dissemination of a Corporate News, transmitted by DGAP - a
service of EQS Group AG.
The issuer is solely responsible for the content of this announcement.

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Language:    English
Company:     Highlight Communications AG
             Netzibodenstrasse 23b
             4133 Pratteln
             Switzerland
Phone:       +41 61 816 96 96
Fax:         +41 61 816 67 67
E-mail:   ir@hlcom.ch
Internet: www.hlcom.ch
ISIN:        CH0006539198
WKN:         920299
Listed:      Regulated Market in Frankfurt (Prime Standard); Regulated
             Unofficial Market in Berlin, Dusseldorf, Hamburg, Hanover,
             Munich, Stuttgart


End of News    DGAP News-Service
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385657 11.08.2015
 



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