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UPDATE 2-MTG shares fall 6 pct after Q1 lags forecasts
April 21, 2017 / 6:46 AM / 8 months ago

UPDATE 2-MTG shares fall 6 pct after Q1 lags forecasts

(Adds currency forecast, shares, detail)

April 21 (Reuters) - Swedish media group MTG said on Friday it was aiming to grow profits and sales this year after posting a quarterly profit just below market forecasts, with losses at its digital arm higher than expected.

* MTG Q1 sales SEK 4,228 mln ($470.6 mln) vs 4,244 seen in Reuters poll

* Q1 operating income up 15 pct to SEK 183 mln vs 191 mln seen in Reuters poll

* Digital arm MTGx Q1 operating loss of 88 mln SEK vs 60 mln seen in Reuters poll

* Says losses in MTGx will come down in Q2 compared to Q1

* MTGx had negative operating margin of 30 pct in Q1

* CEO Jorgen Madsen Lindemann aims for MTGx to show lower losses, higher revenues this year, he tells Reuters

* Says keeps ambition for MTGx to be profitable in 2018

* Says ambition for this year is for MTG group to increase revenues and profits on a like-for-like basis vs 2016

* MTG expects negative currency effects of 75 mln SEK this year, CFO tells telephone conference

* With linear TV viewing in decline, MTG is transforming from a traditional broadcaster into a digital entertainment firm

* Company said last month it had sold its Baltic broadcasting operations to Providence Equity Partners

* MTG, controlled by Swedish investment firm Kinnevik , entered the multi-billion dollar online gaming market by taking a 35 percent stake in InnoGames in October last year

* Shares fall 5.6 pct at 0740 GMT

Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage: ($1 = 8.9851 Swedish crowns) (Reporting by Helena Soderpalm)

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