Interviewed by Challenges, Thierry Drilhon, CEO of Euro Media Group, outlines the group’s upcoming events
Translation of the interview:
Thierry Drilhon is the CEO of Euro Media Group, a partner of Club Business. His activities extend across all areas of image production especially outside of France. He gives details of the upcoming events that will be covered by the group.
Euro Media Group was present at the Sochi Olympics Games. What did you do exactly?
We deployed over 200 technicians, close to 250 cameras and 11 OB trucks in Sochi. They produced part of the coverage of the sporting events, namely the aerial footage for the opening and closing ceremonies.
What future events will you be covering?
Sportswise, we will be at the World Cup and we will be broadcasting the final. We will also be present at the Tour de France and the Monaco Grand Prix.
What programmes do you broadcast and what is your second market?
Our clients are production companies and television networks that use our studios to record shows such as The Voice, Masterchef, Qui veut gagner des Millions (Who wants to be a Millionaire) etc.
And what is your third market?
It’s the events market. For example, broadcasts of the 14th July event on TF1 are produced by our teams but we also produce concerts - Elton John, Beyonce and so on. And finally at Euro Media we enjoy everything to do with Royal Weddings, which brings in additional business.
Euro Media France also produced Orange CEO Stéphane Richard’s Hello ! show did it not?
Yes, we did indeed organise the entire event. With companies in mind, we have also set up a « smart » studio in Boulogne containing all the required infrastructure for corporate productions especially for the internet.
Is the Euro Media Group profitable?
One can never be sufficiently profitable. But, on the whole we have an annual turnover of €350m with an EBITDA of €60m. Our industry requires very heavy investments: 40m a year to renew our technical resources.
Euro Media had its origins in SFP but today it has gone far beyond its French borders…
We are already present in seven Europeans countries and we are either number one or two in the market. We have also acquired Alfacam, a major European player that has allowed us to become the world’s number one in the wireless coverage industry, which has become so important for the Tour de France for example. Obviously cameras, motorcycles, planes and helicopters all require wireless communication.
Who owns Euro Media Group?
There are four major shareholders: the founders who created the group thirty years ago, developed it and had a European vision; and then there’s Allianz, Bolloré and the Belgian group Ackerman.
A few months ago an investment fund showed interest in acquiring Euro Media Group. Are you still interested?
Our strategic vision for the next five years is to become an international leader across the entire value chain of the multimedia/image industry. And that will be subject to further international expansion. Acquiring Alfacam was the largest transaction in the market in the last five years. It undoubtedly attracted a certain amount of favourable attention. And there are always people interested in having a stake in the company’s capital. If it means that it will accelerate our growth then we will look into it.
Interview conducted by Vincent Beaufils and Jean-Baptiste Diebold.