German film rights trading group EM.TV has announced a 2001 first-half operating profit (EBIT) of $53.4 million (DM114m) and a pre-tax loss of $59.5m (DM127m).

In a statement, the company said that it had total sales in the first half of $443.8m (DM947m). The pre-tax loss included interest charges of $130.8m (DM279m), primarily related to financing of Formula One.

EM.TV said it expected sales and earnings to improve in its core business in the second-half.

This year, EM.TM consolidated its stake in Formula One holding firm SLEC, the Jim Henson Company and its stake in TeleMuenchen into the results. Its operating profit of $27.6m (DM59m) a year ago did not include these holdings.

Meanwhile, analysts at Merrill Lynch have changed the medium and long-term rating for the media group ProSiebenSat.1 from Neutral to Reduce, following the company's profit warning today (Sep 28) as a result of the further downturn in ad revenue because of the Sept 11 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington.

The television corporation now anticipates a revenue decline of four percent from last year's record figure. Net income is expected to be down by roughly ten percent from last year, and EBIT and EBITDA by about 20 percent. Pre-tax income will fall by about 30 percent, the company said in an Ad-hoc announcement.