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Entertainment One Ltd Strong earnings growth delivered, confident outlook

Entertainment One Ltd (LON:ETO), today announced full year results for the year ended 31 March 2019.

FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS

· Group reported underlying EBITDA up 21% at £198 million (2018: £164 million), driven by strong growth in Family & Brands and higher margins in Film, Television & Music – Group underlying EBITDA margin improvement by 510 basis points to 21.0%

· Group reported revenue of £941 million (2018: £1,029 million) reflecting continued growth in Family & Brands and lower revenue from Film, Television & Music largely attributable to the change in the film strategy

· Group adjusted profit before tax up 20% at £156 million (2018: £130 million), Group reported profit before tax of £37 million (2018: £65 million), including one-off charges

· Adjusted diluted earnings per share up 30% at 25.0 pence per share (2018: 19.3 pence per share)

· Full year dividend of 1.5 pence per share (2018: 1.4 pence per share)

· Year end net debt leverage at 1.7x, slightly better than guidance

OPERATIONAL HIGHLIGHTS

· Family & Brands continued to deliver strong revenue up 28% and underlying EBITDA growth up 37% from its key brands through a mix of high margin advertising video on demand (AVOD) and subscription video on demand (SVOD) platform revenues and licensing and merchandising (L&M) sales

· Retail sales grew by 6% in the year to US$2.5 billion with broader consumer roll out of our brands still to come

· Film, Television & Music underlying EBITDA grew 9% with margins improving by 300 basis points to 14.6%, due to the changing mix towards television and music and the positive impact of cost savings

· The integration of our Film and Television Divisions completed and on track to deliver £13-15 million in annualised cost savings by end of FY20

· Transition in film now largely complete, with a reduced slate of high quality titles delivering a 56% increase in average box office revenue per release

· Independent library valuation increased to US$2.0 billion as at 31 March 2018 (2017: US$1.7 billion)

CORPORATE POST YEAR END ACQUISITION

· Acquisition of Audio Network, one of the world’s largest independent creators and publishers of original, high quality music for use in film, television, advertising and digital media. The business brings high growth, high margin, recurring revenues and significant cash generation to the Group as well as attractive revenue opportunities in combination with our existing music activities.

ALLAN LEIGHTON, CHAIRMAN, COMMENTED:

“FY19 has been another year of impressive earnings growth for Entertainment One, with the Group’s streamlined structure and talent-driven approach positioning it well in vibrant and dynamic content markets. Our focus on developing relationships with the best creatives in the industry and our deep customer reach give me confidence for the year ahead and beyond. As such, the Board is pleased to increase the dividend by 7% to 1.5 pence per share, in line with its progressive dividend policy.”

DARREN THROOP, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, COMMENTED:

“The work and organisational shifts that we have accomplished over the last few years have positioned the business well in the marketplace, as we reinforced our content creation and ownership anchor and expanded our end-to-end capabilities to ensure we maximise our ability to unlock the power and value of creativity.

Our underlying EBITDA for FY19 is testament to our future-facing strategy, the breadth of our portfolio and platform-agnostic approach and reflects our stronger position in the market. We remain focused on building the leading talent-driven entertainment company in the world and are confident that in the period ahead we will continue to attract outstanding talent and deliver the highest quality content across all areas of our business.”