Xilam, the French producer of global animated hits Oggy & the Cockroaches and Zig & Sharko, posted its highest-ever full-year revenue in 2017 at US$30.4 million. Results were buoyed by 42% and 80% revenue growth in new production and international sales, respectively. Overall, Xilam’s full-year revenue increased by 54% in 2017 versus 40% in 2016.
Broadcasters received 63 half-hours from the company in 2017 compared to 51 in 2016, representing a 24% lift. Xilam’s new production revenue rose to US$19 million and was driven by sales to both linear and digital platforms.
International sales, meanwhile, reached US$17 million, and now account for 56% of Xilam’s total revenue. International sales for the company’s catalog segment represented 89% of revenue in 2017. Xilam attributes the ability of digital platforms to broadcast content worldwide simultaneously as a major factor in its international sales growth.
Catalog revenue, meanwhile, rose by 77% to exceed US$11 million in 2017. The record increase was the result of higher competition between traditional pay- and free-to-air TV channels and digital platforms. Forty percent of Xilam’s catalog revenue is now accounted by digital platforms.
Xilam’s YouTube portfolio, in particular, generated more than 2.6 billion views last year. The 21% increase was primarily driven by the global success of Zig & Sharko and Oggy & the Cockroaches.
The company expects further growth this year with the production of seven animated series including new seasons of Oggy & the Cockroaches, wildlife series If I Were An Animal, Magic (season two) and Paprika. Other new series currently in production include Mr. Magoo, football-themed Coach Me If You Can, the third season of Zig & Sharko and original series The Fabulous Adventures of Prince Moka and Tiny Bad Wolf.
The combined efforts of Xilam’s four studios (Paris, Lyon, Angoulême and Ho-Chi-Minh City in Vietnam) are expected to deliver more than 70 half-hour programs this year and more than 100 in 2020. Xilam also signed new merchandising deals last year with Lansay (toys) and Nazara (mobile video games).
The record year follows the hiring of new COO Dorothée Lanchier, deputy COO Camille Wiplier, head of development and talent management, Marie-Laurence Turpin, as well as SVP of media distribution for Asia Pacific, Celine Carenco.