Boulogne-Billancourt, 24th July 2008
MEETIC (FR0004063097-MEET), the European leader in online dating, today announces its consolidated revenue for the first half to 30th June 2008.
For the first half of 2008, MEETIC recorded consolidated revenue of 63.0 million euros, up +18.4% on the figure of 53.2 million euros recorded over the same half of 2007 and up +20.7% at constant forex. The negative evolution of the British Pound weighed on first-half revenue to the tune of €1.3 million.
Organic growth was +16.3% (pro forma, i.e. the Group’s historical activities excluding acquisitions). 95.6% of revenue was recorded in Europe, and the remaining 4.4% in the rest of the world.
Internet activity recorded further significant growth of +20.55% over the half, +22.97% at constant forex.
The half was marked by the success of the migration of NEU.DE subscribers in Germany to the MEETIC platform and the large-scale winning over of clients in the UK, both of these countries being strategic geographical zones with substantial development potential for the Group’s online dating activity. Subsequently, the number of subscribers was up sharply in these two countries. Growth in subscriber numbers should again be robust over the second half, thanks to two major advertising campaigns launched in June in these two countries.
At 30th June 2008, the total number of subscribers was 651,252, and includes the very substantial increase in subscribers over the first quarter of the current financial year and the traditionally more moderate second-quarter increase.
As a result of the particularly intensive customer-winning strategy implemented in Germany and the United Kingdom, ARPU (Average Revenue Per User) slipped to 17.44 euros over the first half of 2008, from 17.90 euros over the first half of 2007.
Monthly churn was down significantly, at 13.7% over the first half of 2008 from 16.1% over the first half of 2007. This positive trend continues to demonstrate the relevance of the sales policy adopted by MEETIC that incites people to subscribe to longer deals and leads to increased client loyalty.
Revenue from Meetic’s mobile services (MeeticMobile and Superlov) was down 16.44%, at €1.9 million for the six months to 30th June 2008 versus €2.3 million for the six months to 30th June 2007.
The Group’s Chinese subsidiary provided no contribution to the Group’s Mobile revenue this half. A new free version of the eFriendsnet site has been online since December and could generate new sources of revenue, notably advertising revenue.
MeeticMobile continued to record an increase in activity in Europe, with growth of 20.4% over the half.
Recent events and outlook
As announced when the Group presented its annual results and its 3-year strategy, MEETIC plans to intensify its marketing investments over the current FY in order to consolidate its European leadership on the various online dating market segments.
Marketing investments will thus be allocated to the following activities in accordance with preset timetables:
- Strengthening of online dating activity in Germany and the United Kingdom, with a particularly intensive client-winning strategy implemented across these two key geographical zones;
- Launch of Meetic Affinity in France (July 2008) and deployment of the Group’s matchmaking activity in the main countries in which MEETIC is present, following the same strategy based on country-by-country variations of the umbrella-brand (second half of 2008);
- Creation of a MEETIC “publishing and traffic” line via VIOO, MEETIC’s 2.0 female site, online from mid-July 2008. However, we would like to remind you that the bulk of marketing overinvestment will focus on the Group’s traditional activities. No new source of revenue will be generated by this new publishing line during the current financial year.
The marketing investments implemented by MEETIC over the first half of the current financial year thus totalled €38 million, which should result in an operating margin, before amortisation and the cost of free shares, of around 7% over this period.
Given the Group’s intention to maintain its overinvestment strategy on its strategic segments and countries, and given the success of this summer’s advertising campaigns, MEETIC should reach the high end of the advertising overinvestment bracket announced at the start of the year, i.e. €15 million.Marc Simoncini, CEO of MEETIC, says: “As announced, MEETIC implemented the first phase of its strategic plan over the first half of the year. This plan will continue to be implemented over the second half. Indeed, initial feedback regarding the initiatives taken by the Group over the first half gives us confidence in this strategy and in MEETIC’s ability to significantly increase its market share on the British and German markets and on the matchmaking segment. The onlining of the Beta version of VIOO in recent days also confirms our ability to create innovative websites that have the potential to generate new sources of revenue, and notably advertising revenue, that are complementary to our main subscription activity.”
* constant forex