Posted on August 20, 2008

Berlingske Media lost DKK 78 million

I have been trough hell this summer with Nyhedsavisen – because media is writing about media with a passion that very much surpases the size of the company. And today something significant happened – and NO PAPER TOOK IT UP – no one chose to write about it.

Berlingske Media lost DKK 78 million in first half of 2008 and has launched into a down-ward death spiral!!

Im NOT HAPPY ABOUT OTHERS PROBLEMS – but someone needs to publish it – Borsen, Berlingske and JP did not..

After months of nothing but EVIL spin about Nyhedsavisen, it seems very strange (but of course predictable) that NO-ONE is writing about how serious the situation is for Berlingske Media as they are loosing money BIG TIME and fighting for its life with its parent group up to its neck with debt.

Here are the numbers for Berlingske that were announced today:

For new readers beware that ”exceptional items” is accounting language for BULLSHIT. Reducing staff and restructuring the organization are REAL cost of running a business in a down-turn and next year there will just be new “exceptional items”.

If you want to see how AMAZINGLY small a font “exceptional items” can be written in, see their presentation and accountson (do they think small fonts make the problem go away?)

On top of this they will BULLSHIT even more with long talks about online growth when in fact only 5% of total revenue comes from online (90m versus 1.7 billion of newspaper revenue) – FUCK ALL and does not in ANYWAY compensate for the 13% loss in advertising revenue they had just in first half of 2008.

Furthermore, the loss of DKK 78 million is before interest so the parent Mecom has to crack the whip in other countries in order to service their DKK 6 BILLION DEBT! Bankers are knocking on the board room door as we speak as the terms state that the loan cannot exceed 3.5 times the group earnings (EBITDA). And this is not your standard bank overdraft – if you breach the terms you are TOAST!

Nyhedsavisen is squeezing Berlingske on EVERY FRONT and anyone who has spent 5 MINUTES in the newspaper business knows that you CANNOT staff cut your way out of a seriously accelerating advertising loss.

All in all – Berlingske is going DOWN!!

Of course this should also be of interest to JP/Politiken as there business completely mirrors Berlingske’s challenges with only ONE exception: they haven’t really started firing people yet!! Luckily, employees on JP/Politiken have a BOOMING job section in Nyhedsavisen to look forward to!!

And while I’m at it, why is no-one writing about the Metro BULLSHIT about 16% double coverage of Metro and 24 Timer when it is in fact 44%!! How can anyone be in ANY DOUBT that their business concept is so obviously thrown together using the exact same calculators the management used to DESTROY TV2 with!!