Australia's Village Roadshow suffered a 44% slide in first half net profits as its exhibition business suffered from poor product worldwide.

Profits fell to A$22m, with cinema exhibition recording an A$11.8m loss. The cinema, theme park and radio group plans to reduce its operating territories to around nine from 18. The company took a A$23.3m operating loss from the sale of its cinema German circuit.

"Improving the return from cinema is our number one priority," said managing director Graham Burke. "It is our intention to reduce the territories we operate in to between eight and 10, along with the creation of a leaner profile."

Adding to the punishment was a 10% goods-and-services tax in Australia, which is blamed for raising ticket prices. The company also cited the impact of the 2000 Olympics.

Village has cinema operations in Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Singapore, Argentina, Greece, Hungary, Czech Republic, Austria, France, the UK, India and one cinema remaining in Germany.