The European giant RTL Group buys 50 percent stake in SVOD platform Bedrock. The CEO Thomas Rabe’s forecast sees growing revenues for the group.

According to the year-end figures recently published by RTL, there is a 37 percent year-on-year increase in paying subscribers for TV Now (Germany) and Videoland (Netherlands). The two services together make up for 1.44 million subscribed users, and the combined growing revenues amount to $151million.

RTL confirmed it will use the Bedrock platform for Videoland in the Netherlands, and RTL services in Belgium, Hungary and Croatia. The aim of RTL is to make the company a European leader in the streaming space. CEO Thomas Rabe has stated that with RTL stake in Bedrock, the company plans to “grow the number of paying subscribers for streaming services TV Now and Videoland to between 5 and 7 million, to grow streaming revenues to at least $560 million (€500 million)”.

In addition to the streaming operations, RTL has experienced a growth in digital operations (8.9 percent revenue growth) as well as production operations at Fremantle. Fremantle’s revenues, although already strong thanks to the formats Got Talent and X Factor, are expanding thanks to the drama business. Some of the most famous and profiting productions are high-end series, such as Amazon’s American Gods and HBO’s The New Pope. The drama revenues for Fremantle have increased by 36.2 percent in 2019.

Thomas Rabe reported an optimistic forecast for 2020, foreseeing a 2 percent – 3 percent gain in the total revenues. However, he also noted that the forecast did not foresee the event of the coronavirus pandemic in Europe. The CEO admitted it is too early to quantify the impact of the emergency on RTL’s business.