1 Interim Report Q1-3/06 January 1 to September 30, 2006
2 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG 1 Key Figures Group Key Figures Group Q1-3/2006 Q1-3/2005 Change in millions IFRS IFRS year-on-year Revenues 1, , % thereof circulation and advertising revenues 1, , % EBITA 1) % EBITA margin 15.4 % 14.1 % Consolidated net income % EBIT 1) % EBITDA 1) % Total assets 2) 2, , % Equity 2) 1, , % Equity ratio 53.2 % 45.4 % Capital expenditures % Cash flow from operating activities % Earnings per share (in ) % Closing price (in ) % Employees (average number) 9,700 10, % Employees 3) 10,084 9, % 1) Adjusted for non-recurring effects As of September 30, 2006 and December 31, As of September 1, 2006 and January 1, 2006.
3 2 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG Interim Report Axel Springer Group Axel Springer generated higher revenues in its core business in the first nine months of Thanks to the higher level of advertising revenues and the continued practice of strict cost discipline, an improved income from investments and despite the heightened start-up losses for new activities, Axel Springer also managed to generate higher earnings. The earnings before interest, taxes and amortization of goodwill (EBITA) amounted to million, as compared with million in the year-ago period, and the consolidated net income amounted to million, as compared with million in the year-ago period. The earnings per share reached 5.53 (prior-year period: 5.01). The revenues generated in the core business, consisting of advertising and circulation revenues, amounted to 1,610.0 million, after 1,586.8 million in the year-ago period. Total revenues amounted to 1,735.7 million, less than the corresponding year-ago figure of 1,765.8 million, in which the rotogravure revenues were still included prior to the spin-off of the rotogravure activities to the joint venture Prinovis, which took effect on July 1, For the full year 2006, the Management Board anticipates a moderate increase in revenues from the core business. Because the discontinuation of rotogravure revenues will be reflected in the company s full-year results for the first time in 2006, the total consolidated revenues are expected to be slightly lower than the prior-year figure. The Management Board intends to continue its strategy of heightened capital expenditures in the core business of Germanlanguage publications, accompanied by further internationalization and digitization. Thanks to the continued practice of strict cost management, the positive performance of existing titles, an improved income from investments and despite the higher level of start-up costs, the Management Board anticipates that the EBITA for 2006 will be slightly higher than the record EBITA for General economic environment Germany: Economy on the upswing, consumer spending shows mild recovery The six leading economic research institutions of Germany agree that the German economy is in the midst of a strong upswing. In real terms, the gross domestic product expanded 2.0 % in the first nine months of The growth was driven mainly by exports, which increased 12 %, but domestic demand also played a greater role. Consumer spending, the most relevant indicator for the business of Axel Springer AG, recovered only slowly over the nine-month period, posting a real increase of 0.7 %. Mainly as a result of rising energy prices, the inflation rate rose 1.8 % in the first nine months of Business developments Core business strengthened, internationalization continued Amid an operating environment that benefited from the positive impetus of the advertising market, but was also beset by structural challenges, Axel Springer successfully expanded its core business, generating moderately higher revenues in both the Newspapers segment and the Magazines segment. While the Magazines segment reported a renewed earnings increase in the first nine months of 2006, the Newspapers segment reported slightly lower earnings, compared with the year-ago figure, due in particular to the introduction of the Polish daily DZIENNIK. The
4 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG 3 overall positive performance was led by the successful performance of established titles and the new publications that have been launched in Germany and abroad in recent years. In the time from May to September, Axel Springer conducted a detailed analysis of its administrative and service units in order to assess the competitiveness of these non-market divisions. As a result of this analysis, which was completed in September, Axel Springer has decided to reduce the number of employees working in the areas of administration and services by a total of 266 over the next three years. The company expects this reduction will be overcompensated by the increase of employees for new activities. Further advances in digitization In addition to systematically expanding its existing online activities, Axel Springer AG acquired a majority 74.9 % interest in the company Idealo Internet GmbH, the operator of IDEALO.DE, one of Germany s leading search engines for prices and products, in September of this year. At IDEALO.DE, users can find the lowest price for more than 380,000 products. Legal clarity for future acquisitions After the German Cartel Office rejected the intended acquisition of ProSiebenSat.1 Media AG and the Media Concentration Commission also issued a negative decision in January, the parties decided on February 1, 2006 not to consummate the underlying share purchase agreement of August 5, 2005 and the voluntary public takeover bid of September 16, Axel Springer AG filed an appeal against the rejection order of the German Cartel Office on February 23, In its decision of September 29, 2006, the Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court dismissed this appeal. Axel Springer AG will appeal this latter decision before the Federal Supreme Court. Newspapers Germany Net paid circulation, average per issue Q , (IVW) BILD 3,620,399 BILD am SONNTAG 1,906,106 SPORT BILD 469,652 DIE WELT/ WELT KOMPAKT 261,539 WELT am SONNTAG 404,805 HAMBURGER ABENDBLATT 259,530 BERLINER MORGENPOST 149,391 B.Z./B.Z. am SONNTAG 206,968 Newspapers BILD achieved an average paid circulation of 3.6 million units. Its reporting was even more current than usual thanks to having optimized its logistics in preparation for the World Soccer Cup. With an average paid circulation of two million units, BILD AM SONNTAG achieved impressive advertising gains over the prior-year period. The BILD brand merchandising portfolio was successfully expanded by, among other things, the publication of a twelve-volume BILD encyclopedia. In connection with the World Soccer Cup, SPORT BILD increased its advertising revenues substantially over the prioryear period. The advertising revenues of the WELT Group in the first nine months of 2006 exceeded the corresponding year-ago figure. According to Media Analysis 2006 II, the total circulation of WELT increased 7 %. WELT am SONNTAG increased its circulation 4 %, that being its fourth circulation increase in a row. Continuing a trend of steady growth over the course of 2006, DIE WELT and WELT KOMPAKT together achieved an average paid circulation of 270,113 units in the third quarter of 2006, the highest quarterly circulation figure to date, according to the IVW. Now that the editorial management teams of the WELT Group und BERLINER MORGENPOST have been merged, these newspapers are currently in the process of implementing a newsroom concept. Thus, Axel Springer is consolidating the print and online activities of these newspapers, creating one of the biggest integrated editorial teams in Germany. In August 2006, the WELT Group launched a new crossmedia advertising format under the label WELT-Klasse. BERLINER MORGENPOST, together with its advertising supplements, generated substantially higher advertising revenues compared with the prior-year period. With an average paid circulation of more than 149,000 units in the first nine months of 2006, BERLINER MORGENPOST underscored its position as the leading marketplace for help wanted and real estate ads in the Berlin newspaper market. Coinciding with the start of the German National Soccer League on August 7, SPORT-B.Z. has been appearing every day from Monday to Friday, as part of an extended market test. Already the biggest newspaper in the Berlin market, B.Z. reported an impressive increase in its subscription base. HAMBURGER ABENDBLATT generated substantial gains in its advertising revenues, compared with the prior-year period. Aside from the very good trend of help wanted ads, the newspaper also benefited from the opening of several new, big shopping centers in the Hamburg area. Furthermore, HAMBURGER ABENDBLATT ventured into the CD merchandising segment for the first time by issuing an audio sampler.
5 4 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG Magazines Germany Net paid circulation, average per issue, Q , (IVW) TV DIGITAL 1,872,486 HÖRZU 1,577,240 FUNK UHR 769,599 BILDWOCHE 264,695 TV NEU 210,868 BILD der FRAU 1,108,718 FRAU von HEUTE 422,299 JOLIE 352,400 COMPUTER BILD 695,978 COMPUTER BILD SPIELE 460,118 AUDIO VIDEO FOTO BILD 336,012 AUTO BILD 631,707 AUTOMOBIL TESTS 115,379 AUTO BILD ALLES ALLRAD 70,952 AUTO BILD MOTORSPORT 63,547 AUTO BILD SPORTSCARS 55,305 EURO 171,451 EURO am SONNTAG 111,005 MAXIM 136,248 POPCORN 327,601 YAM! 214,517 MÄDCHEN 177,450 STARFLASH 123,749 MUSIKEXPRESS 58,846 ROLLING STONE 57,741 METAL HAMMER 48,514 Magazines The biweekly TV programming guide TV DIGITAL, which was launched in 2004, sets a benchmark for TV programming guides. In this regard, Axel Springer entered into two additional cooperation agreements with programming providers Unity-Media and T-Online to market TV DIGITAL. The internationalization of this brand is being pursued by way of a CableCom edition in Switzerland.The magazine s circulation has stabilized on the high level of about 1.9 million units. BILD der FRAU was given a refined visual makeover at the end of August. With a circulation of more than 1.1 million, BILD der FRAU is very well positioned to assert its status as Germany s biggest women s magazine in this difficult and fiercely contested market. JOLIE, the No. 2 publication in the segment of monthly pocket-sized women s magazines, bolstered its positioning and reached an average paid circulation of more than 352,000 thousand in the first nine months of COMPUTER BILD, still the undisputed market leader in the segment of computer magazines, celebrated its 10-year anniversary in August 2006 by publishing an anniversary issue with special features. COMPUTER BILD SPIELE was again the No. 1 computer games magazine, by a wide margin, in the third quarter of AUTO BILD, Europe s biggest auto magazine, successfully defended its status as the undisputed market leader in its segment, with an average paid circulation of more than 631,000 units. As the most successful international auto magazine brand, AUTO BILD successfully expanded its family of publications with titles like AUTO BILD ALLES ALLRAD. The company Axel Springer Young Mediahouse was renamed Axel Springer Mediahouse München in the third quarter. The new name underscores the company s repositioning as a lifestyle publisher. The paid circulation of YAM, POPCORN and STARFLASH posted growth rates of 8 %, 20 % and 29 %, respectively. And more than 17,000 music lovers visit the YAM! Radio website every day. International With an average paid circulation of 493,000 units in July/August 2006, FAKT is still the most-sold Polish daily. In the advertising market, FAKT ranked second among national dailies in the third quarter, with a market share of 14 %, based on gross advertising revenues. The super-regional Polish daily DZIENNIK, which first appeared on April 18, 2006, had an average paid circulation of approximately 211,000 units per day in July/August 2006, putting it in second place among high-end Polish national dailies. DZIENNIK s advertising revenues also continued to perform very well, on the whole. With its newspapers FAKT and DZIENNIK, Axel Springer Polska achieved a 43 % share of the circulation market for national dailies, making it the biggest publisher in this segment. In Hungary, Axel Springer Budapest acquired the magazine SÁRGA RTV, which makes an excellent addition to its existing portfolio, from Geomedia Verlag AG and published this title for the first time on August 26, By means of this acquisition, the Hungarian subsidiary continues to extend its market leadership position in the Hungarian market for TV programming guides.
6 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG 5 COMPUTER BILD is the most-sold computer magazine in Europe. In March 2006, Axel Springer continued to pursue its international expansion strategy by introducing the seventh international edition of COMPUTER BILD in Russia. This is the first time the BILD brand has been positioned in the Russian market. Axel Springer continued to expand its international licensing business. The second licensed edition of the monthly women s magazine JOLIE was launched in Greece in September AUTO BILD, the world s biggest auto magazine, launched its 28th licensed edition in Montenegro in January and its 29th licensed edition in Denmark in March. The second international licensed edition of AUDIO VIDEO FOTO BILD was introduced in Italy in February Electronic media In the first nine months of 2006, Axel Springer continued to pursue its growth strategy in the electronic media segment. In September, the company completed a major milestone in this regard, with the acquisition of a 74.9 % majority interest in the company Idealo Internet GmbH, the operator of IDEALO.DE, one of Germany s leading search engines for products and prices. Users log on to IDEALO.DE to find the lowest price available for more than 380,000 products. IDEALO.DE makes an excellent cross-media complement to the company s computer magazines, in particular. BILD.T-ONLINE.DE was quite successful in the first nine months of 2006, especially with regard to the marketing of online standard advertising formats and cross-media packages. In the first nine months of 2006, visits and page impressions increased 20 % and 29 %, respectively, surpassing the company s expectations. AUTOBILD.DE, the leading provider of automobile-related editorial content on the Internet, entered record territory in August 2006, with 69.2 million page impressions and 4.6 million visits. According to the internet facts 2006-I study of the Work Group for Online Research (AGOF), AUTOBILD.DE s net circulation increased 34 % to reach 710,000 unique users. In connection with its growth campaign, IMMONET.DE has successfully expanded its activities in the four areas of online marketing, cross-media with BILD, product development and sales/telesales since the first quarter of As a result, IMMONET.DE again managed to increase all its key operating indicators. The number of visitors per month according to Nielsen Netratings crossed the one million mark for the first time. The number of properties listed on the website increased from 400,000 in December 2005 to 560,000 in September With eighteen cross-media ad markets in selected regional editions of BILD magazine, IMMONET.DE is the leading cross-media portal for real estate marketing. The number of open positions posted on STEPSTONE.DE rose almost 28 % to reach 24,271, as compared with 19,005 open positions in the prior-year period, and visits to the website increased by nearly 30 %. Axel Springer holds indirectly a 12 % interest in ProSiebenSat.1 Media AG, plus a 27 % interest in HAMBURG 1. In the future, the national marketing of the metro-area broadcast station HAMBURG 1 will be conducted in collaboration with other metro-area broadcasters from Berlin, Frankfurt, Düsseldorf and Munich. In August, the talk show Britt, which is produced by Axel Springer s TV production company SCHWARTZKOPFF TV, achieved a 17.0 % audience share, its best average showing per month after more than 1,000 broadcasts. Printing and logistics The modernization of the offset printing plant in Ahrensburg has been largely completed. In September 2006, moreover, PRINOVIS commissioned its new rotogravure printing plant in Liverpool, England, according to plan. The basic capacity utilization of this plant has been assured by means of a multi-year contract with Newscorp. PRINOVIS now has six printing plants, located in the cities of Ahrensburg, Darmstadt, Dresden, Itzehoe, Nuremberg and Liverpool. With the goal of establishing nationwide mail delivery and shipping services, Axel Springer AG founded the joint venture PIN Group AG in October 2005, together with the Georg von Holtzbrinck publishing group, WAZ Mediengruppe and Rosalia AG. The shareholders of PIN Group AG intend to bundle their postal services and create a nationwide competitor to Deutsche Post AG in the German mail delivery market. In July 2006, the Madsack publishing group purchased a 5.9 % interest in the equity of PIN Group AG and contributed its Citipost mail delivery service to the joint venture. Since that transaction, Axel Springer AG holds 23.5 % of the equity in this joint venture. In November 2005, Axel Springer convinced more than 2,000 penny discount stores to offer newspapers and magazines in their stores. Following up on this trend, Axel Springer has convinced about 2,400 Lidl stores to stock a small selection of newspapers and magazines since the end of June In total, about 120,800 stores in Germany now offer newspapers and magazines for sale.
7 6 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG Operating Results Group Market environment: Print media distribution declines, uneven growth in advertising market Demand in the print media distribution market contracted further in the first nine months of The total paid circulation of newspapers and magazines was 2.1 % lower than in the prior-year period. At the same time, circulation revenues experienced a moderate decline of 0.5 %. In the first nine months of 2006, the gross advertising revenues (excluding classifieds and ad supplements) of print media (excluding media advertising) amounted to 5.11 billion, indicative of a 4.6 % increase over the prior-year period. However, the pressure on advertising rates did not relent, with the result that net advertising revenues continued to lag behind gross advertising revenues. In the classifieds business, one of the key sources of revenue for subscription newspapers, advertising revenues declined in the first eight months of this year, compared with the corresponding prior-year figure. Axel Springer: Circulation revenues steady, advertising revenues higher Amid this operating environment, which benefited from the positive impetus in the advertising market, but was still beset by structural challenges, Axel Springer generated higher revenues in its core business. The combined total of circulation and advertising revenues increased 23.2 million (+ 1.5 %) to 1,610.0 million over the prior-year period. At million, circulation revenues were 4.2 million (- 0.5 %) less than the year-ago figure, but nonetheless accounted for 50.7 % of the company s total revenues. This decrease can be attributed to a change in the presentation of circulation revenues in Hungary. In total, decreases in the circulation revenues of certain computer, TV programming and women s magazines were offset mainly by the positive performance of the newly launched Polish daily DZIENNIK and by TV DIGITAL, COMPUTER BILD and DIE WELT/WELT KOMPAKT. At million, the advertising revenues were 27.4 million higher (+ 3.9 %) than the year-ago figure, representing 42.0 % of the company s total sales. The revenue gains were led in particular by the Berlin Newspapers Group, HAMBURGER ABENDBLATT and TV DIGITAL, and by the titles in Poland and Hungary. Total revenues amounted to 1, million, less than the prior-year figure of 1,765.8 million, mainly because other revenues decreased by 53.3 (- 29,8 %) to million, due to the discontinuation of rotogravure revenues and the sale of AS Interactive. Foreign revenues Foreign revenues amounted to million, 8.8 million less than the year-ago figure. However, adjusted for the spin-off of the rotogravure printing activities and the change of revenue recognition methods in Hungary, the foreign revenues were 9.4 million higher (+ 3.5 %) than the year-ago figure. Foreign revenues represent 16.0 % (prior-year period: 16.2 %, adjusted: 15.5 %) of Axel Springer s total revenues. Total expenses lower than year-ago figure The expenses contained in EBITA amounted to 1,567.7 million, which was 40.4 million less (- 2.5 %) than the prior-year figure of 1,608.1 million. Purchased goods and services amounted to million, 26.9 million more (+ 4.9 %) than the prior-year figure, because the printing services purchased from PRINOVIS are now contained in the purchased goods and services, which was not the case last year. Conversely, the costs of rotogravure printing operations are no longer contained in the personnel expenses, other operating expenses or in the item of depreciation, amortization and impairments. At million, the personnel expenses were 30.6 million less (- 6.0 %) than the year-ago figure. The item of other operating expenses amounted to million, 27.1 million less (- 5.5 %) than the prior-year figure. Depreciation, amortization and impairments came to 45.5 million, 9.5 million less ( %) than the prior-year figure.
8 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG 7 EBITA and consolidated net income both higher Axel Springer generated an EBITA of million in the first nine months of 2006, indicative of a 18.7 million increase (+ 7.5 %) over the prior-year figure. In effect, the heightened startup losses were more than offset by higher revenues in the advertising business, by the continued practice of strict cost discipline and the step-by-step progress towards making the new titles profitable, and by the higher level of income from investments. The EBITA margin was 15.4 % (prior-year period: 14.1 %). At million, the consolidated net income was 17.0 million higher ( %) than the year-ago figure. Aside from the improved operating results, the increase in the consolidated net income was also helped by the higher net financial income, which resulted, in turn, from a nonrecurring gain of 22.4 million before taxes from an interest rate hedging deal entered into in connection with the planned acquisition of ProSiebenSat.1 Media AG. The earnings per share were 5.53, up from 5.01 in the prior-year period. Operating Results Segments Market environment: Continued decline in circulation, but advertising business shows gains The 377 daily and Sunday newspapers tracked by the market research institution IVW generated total sales of 24.9 million units per issue, representing a 1.8 % decrease from the prior-year period. Single-unit sales again suffered a greater loss than subscription sales. Gross business expenditures on newspaper ads (excluding classifieds and advertising supplements and also excluding media advertising) amounted to 2.69 billion, 3.1 % more than in the prior-year period. The gross advertising expenditures of technical store chains, financial services institutions, car makers, energy and tourism companies were up substantially. Another factor contributing to the revenue increase, besides the heightened volume of ad placements in general, was the increased use of color ads. The advertising expenditures (excluding advertising supplements) of discount stores, which have been a major factor contributing to growth in the newspaper market, were slightly lower in the current-year period, compared with the previous year. Including classifieds, the total volume of ads placed in regional subscription newspapers in the first eight months of 2006 was slightly lower than the prior-year figure. Developments in the classifieds business were mixed. While the volume of published ads relating to real estate, family announcements, automobiles, travel offers and special events was lower, the volume of help wanted ads was substantially higher. Key Figures Newspapers Q3 in millions Q3/2006 Q3/2005 Change External revenues % as % of consolidated revenues 62.4 % 61.6 % Circulation revenues % Advertising revenues % Other revenues % EBITA 64, % EBITA margin 18.5 % 21.0 % Key Figures Newspapers Q1-Q3 in millions Q1-3/ 2006 Q1-3/ 2005 Change External revenues 1, , % as % of consolidated revenues 61.7 % 60.3 % Newspapers Circulation revenues % Advertising revenues % Other revenues % EBITA % EBITA margin 20.7 % 21.9 %
9 8 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG Axel Springer: Circulation revenues slightly lower, newspaper advertising revenues higher In this environment, Axel Springer generated total newspaper revenues of 1,070.1 million, representing a 6.1 million (+ 0.6 %) increase over the year-ago figure. Newspapers were the biggest source of revenue for the Axel Springer Group, accounting for 61.7 % of total revenues. The circulation revenues came to million, slightly less than the prior-year figure of million. Benefiting from the improved conditions in the advertising market, the newspaper advertising revenues rose 3.9 %, by 20.0 million to million. The biggest contributors to this positive performance were the Berlin Newspapers Group, HAMBURGER ABENDBLATT, DZIENNIK in Poland and the newspapers in Hungary. Other revenues amounted to 26.7 million, less than the year-ago figure of 39.3 million. This decrease was caused by the contribution of the company Punkt Direktvertriebs GmbH to PIN Group AG, Leudelingen/Luxembourg and and by a change in the presentation of other revenues at BILD-T-ONLINE. The EBITA came to million, down from the prior-year level of million due to the start-up costs for DZIENNIK. The EBITA margin was 20.7 % (prior-year period: 21.9 %). Magazines Market environment: Lower paid circulation, growth in advertising revenues The average paid circulation of general-interest magazines, including membership and club magazines, was million units per issue, 1.7 % less than the year-ago figure. Circulation losses were sustained most of all in the area of single-unit sales. The proliferation of new general-interest magazines continued. The number of titles tracked by IVW increased by 21 to reach 871 (+ 2.5 %). At 2.17 billion, the gross advertising revenues (excluding media advertising and adjusted on a comparable-title basis) generated in the segment of general-interest magazines in the first nine months of 2006 were 6.3 % higher than the prior-year figure. Key Figures Magazines Q3 in millions Q3/2006 Q3/2005 Change External revenues % as % of consolidated revenues 32.1 % 33.0 % Circulation revenues % Advertising revenues % Other revenues % EBITA % EBITA margin 5.5 % 4.9 % Key Figures Magazines Q1 - Q3 in millions Q1-3/ 2006 Q1-3/ 2005 Change External revenues % as % of consolidated revenues 33.2 % 32.4 % Circulation revenues % Advertising revenues % Other revenues % EBITA % EBITA margin 9.0 % 7.7 % Axel Springer: Circulation revenues steady, magazine advertising revenues higher Axel Springer generated magazine revenues of million in the first nine months of 2006, 3.6 million higher (+ 0.6 %) than the corresponding year-ago figure. Thus, the Magazines segment contributed 33.2 % of the Group s total revenues. The circulation revenues came to million, 3.0 million less (- 0.8 %) than the year-ago figure. The decrease in circulation revenues from traditional TV programming guides and from computer magazines and women s magazines was largely offset by the increased circulation revenues from TV DIGITAL. Magazine advertising revenues came to million, 7.4 million higher (+ 3.9 %) than the prior-year figure. This increase was led mainly by TV DIGITAL, BILD der FRAU and COMPUTER BILD. At 50.1 million, the EBITA for the Magazines segment came to 51.7 million, 7.6 million higher ( %) than the prior-year figure. This increase can be attributed to the heightened profitability of key titles and by the higher level of earnings from successful new titles like TV DIGITAL. The EBITA margin was 9.0 % (prior-year period: 7.7 %).
10 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG 9 Printing The newspaper printing plants continued the moderate growth trend that began last year. As a result of the rotogravure activities having been transferred to the joint venture Prinovis, the external revenues generated by the printing plants in the first nine months of 2006 came to 34.0 million, 35.2 million less than the prior-year figure. The internal revenues amounted to million (prior-year period: million) and the total segment revenues came to million (prior-year period: million). The company s own printing plants are managed as cost centers. The EBITA for the Printing segment came to 1.6 million (prior-year period: 2.9 million). Since July 2005, this figure additionally contains the investment income/expenses from the rotogravure joint venture PRINOVIS Ltd. & Co. KG. Services/Holding The external revenues amounted to 54.9 million, indicative of a 4.6 million (- 7.7 %) decrease from the year-ago figure, due mainly to the sale of the value-added telephone services provider AS Interactive. EBITA improved to -7.9 million (prior-year period: million), essentially as a consequence of a clear improvement in income from investments as well as income resulting from a debtor warrant bond in connection with the Kirch settlement ( 7.6 million). The EBITA was adversely affected by a charge of 9.1 million, which was allocated to the restructuring provision in connection with the analysis of administrative and service units. The cash flow from investing activities amounted to million, (prior-year period: million). The capital expenditures of 55.3 million (prior-year period: 64.5 million) related to intangible assets in the amount of 7.8 million, property plant and equipment in the amount of 16.6 million and non-current financial assets in the amount of 30.9 million. The cash flow from financing activities amounted to million (prior-year period: million) because the company repaid loans totaling million and paid a higher dividend to shareholders in the first half of The net cash flow from operating, investing and financing activities reduced the company s holdings of cash and cash equivalents by 85.6 million. Net liquidity Axel Springer increased its net liquidity from million at year-end 2005 to million at September 30, The total holdings of cash and cash equivalents (including marketable securities carried as current assets) amounted to million at September 30, 2006 (December 31, 2005: million), while the financial liabilities decreased from million to million at the same dates, due to loan repayments. Risks Financial indicators The company s risk assessment has not changed since the annual report at December 31, Financial management On August 14, Axel Springer AG signed an agreement for a syndicated euro loan of 1,500.0 million. The credit facility can be used both for general business purposes and for the financing of acquisitions. Cash flow and capital expenditures Despite the higher consolidated net income of million (prioryear period: million), the cash flow from operating activities, at million, was lower than the prior-year figure of million. This decrease can be attributed above all to the higher level of trade receivables at the period closing date and to tax payments for prior years. Employees In the first nine months of 2006, Axel Springer had an average of 9,700 employees (excluding apprentice-trainees and journalism students/interns). Axel Springer increased its workforce (including apprentice-trainees and journalism students/interns) from 9,803 employees at January 1, 2006 to 10,084 employees at September 1, 2006, representing an increase of 281 employees (+ 2.9 %).
11 10 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG Share Positive share price development After an increase of 25.6 % in 2005, the Axel Springer share price continued to follow a positive trend in the first nine months of The share closed at on September 29, 2006, 8.9 % higher than the closing price at the corresponding year-ago date ( 104.5). After the announcement of a potential placement of 10 % of Axel Springer shares by the US-investor Hellman & Friedman on October 16, 2006 the share price increased to 120,00 by the end of October Annual shareholders meeting 2006 The shareholders present and represented at the annual shareholders meeting of Axel Springer AG, which was held in Berlin on April 27, 2006, approved the proposed resolutions on the meeting agenda with majorities of 99 % in every case. The adopted resolutions related to the authorization to purchase and use the company s own shares and the distribution of a 1.70 dividend per qualifying share. A total of 28.9 million shares were present or represented at the meeting, accounting for 85.1 % of the company s capital stock. Shareholder structure On July 14, 2006, Dr. Mathias Döpfner, Chairman of the Management Board of Axel Springer AG, indirectly purchased 680,000 shares of Axel Springer AG from the shareholdings of Dr. h.c. Friede Springer at the price of 77 euros per share. These shares represent an equity interest of 2,1 %. Consequently, the personally held share package of Friede Springer was reduced to 5 %. The majority interest of 50 % plus 10 shares in the company Axel Springer Gesellschaft für Publizistik, which is controlled by Friede Springer, is not affected by this transaction. On May 24, 2006, Dr. Oliver Krauß brought an action contesting the resolutions adopted at the annual shareholders meeting of April 27, 2006 concerning the ratification of Management Board and Supervisory Board actions and the authorization to purchase and use the company s own shares. The action is currently pending before the Berlin Regional Court (Case No. 93 O 86/06). The company Pomoschnik Rabotajet GmbH has joined the action on the side of the plaintiff. Axel Springer AG is defending against all the claims asserted in this action. On May 19, 2005, Dr. Oliver Krauß brought an action for annulment of the following resolutions adopted at the annual shareholders meeting of April 20, 2005: Agenda Item 2 (Appropriation of net profit), Agenda Item 3 (Ratification of Management Board actions), Agenda Item 4 (Ratification of Supervisory Board actions) and Agenda Item 7 (Authorization to purchase and use the company s own shares pursuant to Section 71 (1) (8) of the German Stock Corporations Act ( AktG ), including the Management Participation Program). The Berlin Regional Court dismissed the action in first instance on February 9, The appeal lodged by Dr. Oliver Krauß on March 9, 2006 is currently pending before
12 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG 11 the Appellate Court (Case No. 23 U 49/06). Axel Springer AG has moved for dismissal of the appeal. Outlook In their Autumn 2006 assessment, the six leading economic research institutions predict that Germany s gross domestic product will grow at a strong rate of 2.3 % in 2006, but then weaken to 1.4 % in The increase in the rate of value-added tax which is scheduled to take effect in 2007 is expected to stimulate consumer spending in 2006, for an increase of 0.9 %. In 2007, consumer spending is expected to stagnate again. Thanks to robust growth in the global economy, exports are projected to rise 10.0 % in 2006 and 6.2 % in Likewise, imports are expected to grow at the strong rate of 9.7 % in 2006 and 5.2 % in Employment is expected to grow significantly in 2006 and 2007, with the unemployment rate falling from 10.4 % to 9.9 % in For the full year 2006, the Management Board anticipates a moderate increase in revenues from the core business. Because the discontinuation of rotogravure revenues will be reflected in the company s full-year results for the first time in 2006, the total consolidated revenues are expected to be slightly lower than the prior-year figure. The Management Board intends to continue its strategy of heightened capital expenditures in the core business of Germanlanguage publications, accompanied by further internationalization and digitization. Thanks to the continued practice of strict cost management, the positive performance of existing titles, an improved income from investments and despite the higher level of start-up costs, the Management Board anticipates that the EBITA for 2006 will be slightly higher than the record EBITA for For the advertising market, it is expected that the improving economic conditions and the growing willingness of consumers to spend will continue to drive the growth of gross advertising revenues until the end of Heightened advertising expenditures are anticipated, especially for durable consumer goods, in connection with the planned increase in the rate of value-added tax, scheduled to take effect in Depending on the trend of consumer spending, the market research institute ZAW predicts an increase of roughly 2% in net advertising revenues for the full year The forecast for 2007 is less optimistic, in view of the tougher economic environment that is expected to prevail then. The full extent to which consumer spending will be affected by the additional cost burden on private households and businesses caused by the increased rate of value-added tax and by the rising cost of health care and retirement savings remains to be seen. Market observers believe that the dampening effect of the above-mentioned factors on consumer spending will impact the advertising expenditures of many companies as well.
13 12 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG Interim Financial Statements Consolidated Balance Sheet Consolidated Balance Sheet EUR thousands ASSETS 09/30/ /31/2005 Non-current assets 1,841,257 1,616,482 Fixed assets 1,808,411 1,584,507 Intangible assets 188, ,894 Property, plant and equipment 756, ,522 Investment property 37,525 37,987 Non-current financial assets 826, ,104 Investments in associated companies accounted for by the equity method 286, ,532 Other non-current financial assets 540, ,572 Receivables and other assets 2,117 2,286 Deferred taxes 30,729 29,689 Current assets 924, ,517 Inventories 44,014 49,031 Trade receivables 203, ,460 Receivables due from related parties 66,782 66,365 Current income tax receivables 15,732 25,185 Other assets 95,630 90,348 Cash and cash equivalents 498, ,128 Total assets 2,765,361 2,611,999 Consolidated Balance Sheet EUR thousands EQUITY AND LIABILITIES 09/30/ /31/2005 Equity 1,471,781 1,184,989 Shareholders of Axel Springer AG 1,460,486 1,174,410 Minority interests 11,295 10,579 Non-current liabilities 627, ,484 Pension provisions 286, ,391 Other provisions 30,817 32,371 Financial liabilities 103, ,405 Other non-current liabilities 51,820 23,422 Deferred taxes 155, ,895 Current liabilities 665, ,526 Pension provisions 45,470 46,752 Other provisions 153, ,773 Financial liabilities 11, ,556 Trade payables 167, ,197 Liabilities due to related persons 42,041 45,588 Current income tax liabilities 88,879 95,637 Other liabilities and accruals 156, ,023 Total equity and liabilities 2,765,361 2,611,999
14 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG 13 Consolidated Income Statement Consolidated Income Statement EUR thousands Q3/2006 Q3/2005 Q1-3/2006 Q1-3/2005 Revenues 563, ,258 1,735,702 1,765,760 Other operating income 18,654 30,893 47,280 67,283 Change in inventories and internal costs capitalized 628 1,944 1,318 5,153 Purchased goods and services - 195, , , ,862 Personnel expenses - 167, , , ,827 Depreciation, amortization and impairments - 15,042-15,236-45,518-54,955 Other operating expenses - 145, , , ,423 Income from investments 30,817 8,942 50,452 31,969 Income from associated companies accounted for under the equity method 6,700 6,204 14,605 12,578 Other investment income 24,117 2,738 35,847 19,391 Net financial income/expenses 1, ,566-5,721 Interest income 4,835 3,454 15,576 8,789 Interest and similar expenses - 8,286-7,137-26,309-24,832 Other net financial expenses 5,061 4,646 26,299 10,322 Income taxes - 28,937-34, ,707-99,202 Income from continuing operations 61,887 57, , ,175 Income/losses from discontinued operations 0-2,388-2, Consolidated net income 61,887 55, , ,339 Consolidated net income attributable to shareholders of Axel Springer AG 60,960 53, , ,606 Consolidated net income attributable to minority interests 927 1,453 3,765 2,733 Basic earnings per share from continuing operations (in EUR) Diluted earnings per share from continuing operations (in EUR) Basic earnings per share (in EUR) Diluted earnings per share (in EUR)
15 14 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG Consolidated Cash Flow Statement Consolidated Cash Flow Statement EUR thousands Q1-3/2006 Q1-3/2005 Consolidated net income 173, ,339 Depreciation, amortization, impairments on and increases in value of fixed assets 45,600 56,045 Equity income from associated companies - 14,605-12,578 Dividends received from associated companies accounted for under the equity method 7,400 7,501 Gains(-)/losses(+) on disposal of fixed assets 3,131-1,173 Income(-)/losses(+) from discontinued operations 2, Other non-cash income and expenses - 8,117-15,736 Changes in deferred taxes 5,286 14,363 Change in other balance sheet items - 53,284 12,617 Cash flow from operating activities 161, ,214 Proceeds from disposal of intangible assets, property, plant and equipment 4,872 14,597 Net cash inflow/outflow from initial consolidations/deconsolidations 1,395-1,579 Purchases of intangible assets, property, plant and equipment and investment property - 55,330-64,500 Cash flow from investing activities - 49,063-51,482 Dividends paid Dividends paid to shareholders of Axel Springer AG - 52,126-44,460 Dividends paid to minority interests - 2,976-4,183 Repayments of finance lease obligations ,315 Additions to other financial liabilities 2,655 3,956 Repayments of other financial liabilities - 145,180-17,366 Cash flow from financing activities - 197,807-64,368 Cash flow-related changes in cash - 85, ,364 Effects of exchange rate changes on cash and cash equivalents Cash and cash equivalents at beginning of period 585, ,546 Cash and cash equivalents at end of period 498, ,954
16 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG 15 Statement of Changes in Equity Q1-3/2006 EUR thousands Other accumulated equity Number of shares outstanding (shares) Subscribed capital Additional paid-in capital Consolidated retained earnings Treasury shares Currency translation adjustments Other Changes in fair value of financial instruments Shareholders of Axel Springer AG Minority interests Consolidated equity Balance 01/01/ ,662, ,000 26,574 1,041, ,203 1, ,791 28,746 1,174,410 10,579 1,184,989 Consolidated net income 169, ,549 3, ,314 Currency translation differences - 1,343-1, ,450 Changes in fair value of financial instruments 159, , ,642 Consolidated comprehensive income 169,549-1, , ,764 3, ,506 Dividends paid - 52,126-52,126-2,976-55,102 Management Participation Program 2,248 2,248 2,248 Other changes recognized directly in equity for companies accounted for under the equity method 8,174 8,174 8,174 H&F call option Other changes Balance 09/30/ ,662, ,000 28,838 1,159, , ,349 36,920 1,460,486 11,295 1,471,781 Q1-3/2005 EUR thousands Other accumulated equity Number of shares outstanding (shares) Subscribed capital Additional paid-in capital Consolidated retained earnings Treasury shares Currency translation adjustments Other Changes in fair value of financial instruments Shareholders of Axel Springer AG Minority interests Consolidated equity Balance 01/01/ ,662, ,000 23, , , ,684 27, ,503 10, ,399 Consolidated net income 153, ,606 2, ,339 Currency translation differences 1,449 1, ,408 Changes in fair value of financial instruments 60,191 60, ,452 Consolidated comprehensive income 153,606 1,449 60, ,246 2, ,199 Dividends paid - 44,460-44,460-4,183-48,643 Management Participation Program 2,463 2,463 2,463 Other changes recognized directly in equity for companies accounted for under the equity method 1,825 1,825 1,825 H&F call option Other changes ,271-1,276 Balance 09/30/ ,662, ,000 25, , ,203 1,249 90,875 29,372 1,037,466 8,395 1,045,861
17 16 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG Explanatory Notes Segment Report Segment Reporting - Primary Reporting Format Q3 EUR thousands Newspapers Magazines Printing Services/Holding Consolidated Total Q3 Q3 Q3 Q3 Q3 Q3 Q3 Q3 Q3 Q External revenues 351, , , ,001 10,580 11,405 20,176 19, , ,258 Internal revenues 3,234 4,543 1,606 1,612 57,365 59,420 28,441 41,939 Segment revenues 354, , , ,613 67,945 70,825 55,492 61,121 EBITDA 66,292 75,548 11,894 11,059 9,944 9,345 16,126-5, ,256 90,501 income from investments included therein 3,797 2,345 1,160 1,219 3,150 2,870 22,710 2,508 30,817 8,942 thereof accounted for under the equity method 3,679 1, ,770 3,150 2,870-1, ,700 6,204 Depreciation, amortization and impairments - 1,405-1,438-1,859-1,735-6,794-6,475-4,984-5,588-15,042-15,236 Segment earnings(ebita) 64,887 74,110 10,035 9,324 3,150 2,870 11,142-11,039 89,214 75,265 Impairment loss on goodwill EBIT 64,887 74,110 10,035 9,324 3,150 2,870 11,142-11,039 89,214 75,265 Non-recurring items , ,522 Earnings before interest, taxes and discontinued operations 64,887 74,110 10,035 9,324 3,150 18,870 11,142-11,517 89,214 90,787 Net financial income 1, Income taxes - 28,937-34,346 Income from continuing operations 61,887 57,404 Segment Reporting - Secondary Reporting Format Q3 EUR thousands Domestic Foreign Consolidated Total Q3 Q3 Q3 Q3 Q3 Q Consolidated external revenues 471, ,009 91,113 88, , ,258
18 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG 17 Segment Reporting - Primary Reporting Format Q1 -Q 3 EUR thousands Newspapers Magazines Printing Services/Holding Consolidated Total Q1-3 Q1-3 Q1-3 Q1-3 Q1-3 Q1-3 Q1-3 Q1-3 Q1-3 Q External revenues 1,070,148 1,064, , ,977 34,026 69,226 54,898 59,546 1,735,702 1,765,760 Internal revenues 11,357 14,511 5,168 5, , , , ,043 Segment revenues 1,081,505 1,078, , , , , , ,589 EBITDA 225, ,138 57,301 49,430 21,868 29,648 7,430-12, , ,229 income from investments included therein 13,056 6,726 4,244 5,708 1,590 2,870 31,562 16,665 50,452 31,969 thereof accounted for under the equity method 10,654 4,276 4,262 5,394 1,590 2,870-1, ,605 12,578 Depreciation, amortization and impairments - 4,320-4,514-5,621-5,300-20,278-26,778-15,299-18,363-45,518-54,955 Segment earnings (EBITA) 221, ,624 51,680 44,130 1,590 2,870-7,869-31, , ,274 Impairment loss on goodwill EBIT 221, ,624 51,680 44,130 1,590 2,870-7,869-31, , ,274 Non-recurring items , , ,824 Earnings before interest, taxes and discontinued operations 221, ,624 51,680 44,130 1,590 18,870-7,869-33, , ,098 Net financial income 15,566-5,721 Income taxes - 106,707-99,202 Income from continuing operations 175, ,175 Segment Reporting - Secondary Reporting Format Q1- Q3 EUR thousands Domestic Foreign Consolidated Total Q1-3 Q1-3 Q1-3 Q1-3 Q1-3 Q Consolidated external revenues 1,458,825 1,480, , ,696 1,735,702 1,765,760
19 18 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG General information The present interim financial statements at September 30, 2006 have been drawn up in accordance with IAS 34 Interim Reporting. In some cases, the format of the interim financial statements has been abridged from the format used in the consolidated financial statements for The accounting and valuation methods and the estimation methods applied in the interim financial statements at September 30, 2006 are the same as those applied in the consolidated financial statements at December 31, A detailed description of these methods has been published in the notes to the consolidated financial statements in the 2005 Annual Report. Consolidation group All significant domestic and foreign subsidiaries in which Axel Springer AG exercises control over financial and operational policies, directly or indirectly, are included in the interim financial statements of the Axel Springer Group. The consolidation group has undergone the following changes since the end of 2005: in the first quarter of 2006, Axel Springer AG contributed its equity holding in PIN intelligente dienstleistungen AG, Berlin, which had formerly been accounted for by the equity method, and the company Punkt Direktvertriebs GmbH, Hamburg, which had formerly been fully consolidated, to PIN Group AG, Leudelingen/Luxembourg. Besides the PIN Group AG, the equity holdings in Kieler Zeitung, Verlagsund Druckerei KG-GmbH & Co., Kiel, Kieler Zeitung Verwaltungs GmbH & Co. Beteiligungs KG, Kiel, Kieler Zeitung GmbH & Co. Offsetdruck KG, Kiel, and Lübecker Nachrichten GmbH, Lübeck, were included in the consolidation group for the first time and accounted for by the equity method. In the third quarter of 2006, the fully consolidated company AS Zeitschriften Berlin GmbH, Berlin, was merged with the fully consolidated company Axel Springer Mediahouse München GmbH, Munich (formerly Axel Springer Young Mediahouse GmbH, Munich). In addition, the companies Idealo Internet GmbH, Berlin, Sport-B.Z. GmbH, Berlin, and BayernInvest AS Invest Plus-Fonds, Munich, were included in the consolidation group as fully consolidated companies for the first time. The company BayernInvest AS Invest Plus-Fonds, Munich, is a special-purpose entity. The acquisition of a majority interest in the equity of Idealo Internet GmbH, Berlin, is subject to the application of IFRS 3 Business combinations. In this regard, the following disclosures are made below: After the transaction was cleared by the antitrust authorities, the 74.9 % interest in the company s equity was acquired on September 25, 2006, upon payment of the cash purchase price. The preliminary acquisition costs of EUR 60,176 thousand contain, in addition to the cash purchase price, also the conditional purchase price components in the form of put options on the company s remaining shares. In view of these put options, no minority interests in equity were recognized in connection with the initial consolidation of this subsidiary. The liability resulting from the put options was recognized with the amount of the present value of the estimated amount required to settle the obligation. At the time when the present interim financial statements were prepared, the available IFRS financial statements for Idealo Internet GmbH, Berlin, at the acquisition date were merely preliminary and therefore it was not yet possible to effect a final purchase price allocation. In accordance with IFRS 3.62, the business combination has been presented in the interim financial statements at September 30, 2006 for the first time on the basis of this provisional data. The increase in the item of intangible assets resulted almost entirely from this initial consolidation. No profit contribution by Idealo Internet GmbH, Berlin, was recognized in the consolidated income statement of the Axel Springer Group for the third quarter. Due to the fact that the business combination was effected only shortly prior to the period closing date, the information required under IFRS 3.70 could not be determined. In the table below, the consolidation group of the Axel Springer Group at September 30, 2006 is presented and contrasted with the consolidation group at December 31, 2005: 09/30/ /31/2005 Fully consolidated companies Domestic Foreign Fully consolidated specialpurpose entities Domestic 5 4 Foreign 1 1 Companies consolidated under the equity method Domestic 10 7 Foreign 2 1
20 INTERIM REPORT JANUARY SEPTEMBER 2006 / AXEL SPRINGER AG 19 Discontinued operations In the period covered by this report, subsequent expenses were incurred in relation to the sale of Ullstein Heine List GmbH & Co. KG, in connection with the divestment of the Books segment. The prior-year figures consisted of subsequent income and expenses related to the sale of Ullstein Heine List GmbH & Co. KG, in connection with the discontinuation of the Books segment and Weltkunst Verlag GmbH. Other disclosures At September 30, 2006, the company held 3,337,700 of its own shares, the same number held at December 31, The other operating income of the reporting period includes an amount of EUR 7.6 million resulting from a settlement agreement closed in 2004 in conjunction with the Kirch insolvency. The net financial income for the period covered by this report contains a one-time gain of EUR 22.4 million from an interest rate hedging deal entered into in connection with the financing of the planned acquisition of ProSiebenSat.1 Media AG.