M6 reports first-half revenue and profits

French commercial broadcaster M6 has posted revenue and profit increases for the first half of 2010. Advertising revenue at the core free-to-air channel increased 12.3%, taking the total to €190.9m. Management at RTL-backed M6 were cautiously optimistic about prospects for the third quarter, but would not issue ad revenue forecasts.

Revenues from M6’s digital channels, notably W9, and diversified activities were the fastest growing segments. Programming costs increased to €156.3m in the first six months of the year compared with €148.4m in the same period a year earlier.

M6 reported first-half results in the same week as its larger rival, TF1, which also posted healthy profit and revenue increases. Nick Bell, from investment bank Jefferies International, noted that while M6 has underperformed compared with TF1, its first-half performance was credible and that trend should continue through the rest of 2010.