With interests in 61 television channels, 30 radio stations, a global business for content production and distribution, and rapidly growing digital video businesses, RTL Group entertains, informs and engages audiences around the world.
The Luxembourg-based company owns stakes in TV channels and radio stations in Germany, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Spain, Hungary and Croatia. With Fremantle, it is one of the world’s leading producers of television content: from talent and game shows to drama, daily soaps and telenovelas, including Idols, Got Talent, Good Times − Bad Times and Family Feud. With its investments in online video – BroadbandTV, StyleHaul, Divimove and, most recently, United Screens – RTL Group is the leading European media company in online video. RTL Group also built a global ad tech powerhouse, combining the video ad serving platform SpotX with the European monetisation platform Smartclip in 2018.
The roots of the company date back to 1924, when Radio Luxembourg first went on air. Compagnie Luxembourgeoise de Radiodiffusion (CLR) was founded in 1931. As a European pioneer, the company broadcast a unique programme in several languages using the same wavelength.
RTL Group itself was created in spring 2000, following the merger of Luxembourg-based CLT-UFA and the British content production company Pearson TV, owned by Pearson PLC. CLT-UFA was created in 1997 when the shareholders of UFA (Bertelsmann) and the historic Compagnie Luxembourgeoise de Télédiffusion – CLT (Audiofina) merged their TV, radio and TV production businesses.
Bertelsmann has been the majority shareholder of RTL Group since July 2001. RTL Group’s shares (ISIN: LU0061462528) are publicly traded on the regulated market (Prime Standard) of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange and on the Brussels and Luxembourg stock exchanges. Since September 2013, RTL Group has been listed in the prestigious MDAX stock index.
Television: RTL Group is Europe’s largest free-to-air broadcaster. Each day, millions of viewers all over Europe watch RTL Group’s television channels, which include the families of channels clustered around the flagships RTL Television in Germany, M6 in France, RTL 4 in the Netherlands and RTL-TVI in Belgium. The Group also has broadcasting operations in Hungary (RTL Klub, RTL II, and six cable channels), Croatia (RTL Televizija, RTL 2, RTL Kockica), and Luxembourg, as well as interests in Atresmedia in Spain.
Radio: RTL Group’s radio stations reach millions of listeners each day. The Group’s flagship radio station is RTL Radio in France, and it also owns or has interests in stations in Germany (including 104.6 RTL, Antenne Bayern), Belgium (Bel RTL, Radio Contact), Spain (Onda Cero, Europa FM, Melodía FM) and Luxembourg (RTL Radio Lëtzebuerg, Eldoradio).
RTL Group’s content production arm, Fremantle, is one of the largest creators, producers and distributors of television brands in the world. With operations in 30 countries, Fremantle is responsible for over 12,500 hours of TV programming broadcast each year. The company also distributes more than 20,000 hours of content in over 200 territories.
RTL Group has become the leading European media company in online video and is ranked among the top global players in this segment. Since 2013, RTL Group has made key investments in several multi-platform networks (MPNs) such as BroadbandTV, StyleHaul, Divimove and, most recently, United Screens. Additionally, RTL Group invested into advertising technology, namely video ad serving platform SpotX in the US and monetisation platform Smartclip in Europe as well as the investments accounted for using the equity method: Clypd, a pioneer in programmatic TV, and VideoAmp, a platform for cross-screen data optimisation. In 2017, RTL Group decided to combine SpotX and Smartclip to create one integrated ad-tech company by the end of 2018, to launch the platform across the Group’s operations and to scale it up with further acquisitions and partnerships.