Media down slightly at Quebecor, but OTT Club illico up 18% YOY

The service recently commissioned nine original series.
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Overall revenue at Quebecor got a healthy boost in the quarter ended Sept. 30, with the Quebec-based media and communications company bringing in $859.8 million, up from $829.6 million in Q3 2017.

That boost was largely driven by strength from Videotron, its cellular, internet and TV service. Quebecor’s media sector, meanwhile, brought in $170.9 million, down from $186.8 million. The media sector includes TV channels such as TVA and TVA Sports, print newspapers Le journal de Montreal and Le journal de Quebec and 24 heures, and magazines such as Elle Canada, Canadian Living and  Elle Quebec and an OOH network.

Media revenues have been up and down for Quebecor for the last year. It rose to $199.5 million in Q4 before dropping to $173.2 million the next quarter. It then rose again to $186.5 million last quarter before this quarter’s drop. The division did boast a profit, however, with adjusted EBITDA of $29.6 million. While that’s down from Q3 2017 ($35.7 million), that’s up from two straight quarters of loss in EBITDA. Total EBITDA for the company was $465.4 million.

Elsewhere, its OTT offering Club illico, continued to demonstrate strong growth, with year-over-year revenues increasing by 17.8%. The service recently hit its five-year anniversary and announced commissions for nine original series and 20 exclusive acquisitions. The company reports approximately 350 million views since its launch.

CEO Pierre Karl Peladeau referred to the quarter’s results as “solid” and credited Videotron for the performance. Peladeau also highlighted the launch of new products and services such as QUB Radio, its new digital radio station and audio service. In the two weeks since its launch, QUB Radio has seen 100,000 downloads, according to Peladeau.

He also referred to the acquisition of LC Media, owner of Le Guide de l’auto, which occurred at the tail end of the quarter. Peladeau said the acquisition “will support our convergence strategy” as the company aims to focus more on digital media properties.

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