TCH expects further acquisitions

THE deteriorating economic environment will result in “bargain” media assets coming on the market over the next 15 months, according to Thomas Crosbie Holdings group managing director Anthony Dinan.

Mr Dinan said the group is well placed to bid for any suitable assets that may appear on the market.

Yesterday, Irish Examiner owner, Thomas Crosbie Holdings Ltd, reported financial results for year ended 30 December, 2007. The accounts show that TCH increased group sales to €113 million, up from €106m in 2006, according to accounts to be filed with the Companies Registration Office.

TCH acquired a 75% share holding in Waterford radio stations WLR FM and Beat 102-103 FM in 2007 and the accounts show the acquisitions added €1.51m to turnover. Net cash outflows paid for acquisitions came to €13.6m.

Operating profit before interest and taxation was €11.1 million (€12.18m in 2006). The accounts show that selling and distribution costs increased to €15.98m from €14.86m a year earlier, while administrative costs rose to €26.36m from €25.24m in 2006.

Profits on ordinary activities after taxation came to €11.03m (up from €5.32m in 2006). Shareholders’ dividends were €3.22m (from €3.25m) and directors’ remuneration €1.08m (€1.05m).

Employee costs also rose in the year with wages, social welfare and pension costs coming to €43.65m in 2007, (from €42.89m in 2006). The group increased numbers employed to 761 from 740 in 2006.

TCH made profits of €2.3m on the disposal of fixed assets in 2007, while bank loans increased to €24.87m (from €13.32m).

Mr Dinan said that considering the economic climate the results were very satisfactory and thanked his colleagues for their input.

“While 2008 continues to be difficult from a trading point of view I am satisfied we took action on our costs earlier in the year which will ensure we come through the present recession stronger than ever,” he added.

Mr Dinan said he expects 2009 to be tougher than 2008 but that there is room for more cost cuts.

TCH chairman, Alan Crosbie expressed satisfaction at the results. “The group performance was a reflection of the commitment demonstrated by management and staff operating in the most competitive media market in the world,” he said.


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