Bertelsmann’s Double-Digit Growth

German media giant Bertelsmann reported double-digit growth for the first quarter of 2014, with revenues boosted by the buyout of KKR, its former partner in music rights group BMG.

The increase was also driven by Arvato’s takeover of the e-commerce service provider Netrada, the merger with publisher Penguin Random House and the purchase of the financial services provider Gothia. Income from all operations was up to euro 3.9 billion ($5.4 billion) and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization soared to $596 million – 3.6 percent up on the $576 million in Q1 2013.

“Our operating performance is good, and last year’s major transactions are paying off,” said Bertelsmann chairman and chief exec Thomas Rabe. “In the months ahead, we will expand our education business. In the long term, this sector will become a third mainstay of Bertelsmann’s business, alongside media content and services.”

In the first quarter, Bertelsmann spent a further $378 million on acquisitions and announced it would invest a nine-digit dollar amount in companies from the education sector.

Bertelsmann chief financial officer Judith Hartmann said the company will “invest massively” in building and expanding its businesses in the years ahead.