Madman Entertainment has posted a 16.7 per cent decline in first-half earnings to $4.99 million as the distributor invested in the digital conversion of its catalogue and its inventory increased.

Madman is a division of listed entertainment company Funtastic, which posted an 8.1 per cent lift in underlying earnings to $11.47 million over the same period.

“The product line-up for the second half for Madman is strong which indicates that another solid performance should be achieved in the second half,” Funtastic said in its half-year report.

In May 2012, Madman was approved as an official iTunes aggregator and it offers management and distribution services to producers and companies wanting to distribute their content on iTunes. The company said it has recently implemented a new digital workflow and media library production technologies which enable rapid and efficient deployment of content across numerous digital platforms.

“Madman’s first-half profit performance was better than anticipated, driven by higher than forecast revenues as it continues to buck the broader category trend,” Funtastic said. “Short-term investment in costs, associated with the digital conversion of the catalogue and increased inventory holding costs resulted in constrained profits of $4,998,000, down from $6,003,000 in the prior corresponding period.”

Madman began as a specialist distributor of Japanese Anime but has since expanded into all types of film and television content. It holds a 6.1 per cent share of the Australian home entertainment market.

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