Big Media’s 1Q Earnings Roundup: Cash

The money is flowing again into Big Media. Just about every media CEO who recently spoke to Wall Street analysts about this year’s 1st Quarter earnings said that ad sales are up and consumers are spending. “Viacom … Read More »

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HuffPo Takes Bite Out Of AOL Earnings

By | Wednesday May 4, 2011 @ 6:48am PDT

In its first earnings call since acquiring The Huffington Post in March for $315 million, AOL reported this morning that its first-quarter profit fell 86% to $4.7 million, down from $34.7 million a year ago. The integration — which includes … Read More »

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UPDATE: CBS’ Les Moonves Expects Huge Ad Sales, Even Without Charlie Sheen

UPDATE, 3:07 PM: CBS Corp chief Les Moonves is such a relentless salesman you can’t resist being suspicious when he makes seemingly over-the-top financial forecasts the way he did today. But the results in CBS’ latest earnings report are too impressive, and his predictions are too specific, to ignore. Moonves says he expects “solid double-digit increases” in CBS’ ad sales in the coming upfront market. That’s one of the most bullish forecasts we’ve heard so far from a network executive. If the NFL season falls apart due to the team owners’ lockout, then “we expect to get a greater piece of the (advertising) pie.” Talking up CBS’ programming, Moonves says that Hawaii Five-0 is destined to become “a billion dollar franchise for us” following an initial syndication deal that prices the show at $5 million an episode. Moonves also is a fan of Netflix and other companies that want to offer TV programs online: Moonves says a deal that would enable Netflix to stream CBS shows in Latin America and Canada “might happen very quickly.” He’s also talking to Amazon, and expects to hear from Blockbuster as its new owner Dish Network considers using the home video chain to launch an online subscription service. Revenue from the Netflix deal that Moonves cut in February will appear on CBS’ books beginning in the second quarter.

In other matters, Moonves says that “there are a lot of moving pieces” with the Warner Bros-produced sitcom Two And A Half Men now that Charlie Sheen is gone, and he doesn’t know whether it will return. The CEO also says that he “has no great intent to sell” CBS’ outdoor advertising business. 

The bullish predictions, the strong 1Q results, a decision to double CBS’ dividend to 10 cents a share, and the company’s plan to keep buying back its stock had a predictable result: The price of CBS’ shares rose 4.4% in after-hours trading.

PREVIOUS, 1:40 PM: CBS Corporation just provided yet more evidence that the advertising market is regaining its strength. The broadcast company’s 1Q earnings smashed through analysts’ expectations. Read More »

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Comcast Earnings Grow With Help From NBCU Cable Networks

By | Tuesday May 3, 2011 @ 1:51pm PDT

Comcast reported today that its first-quarter revenue grew 31.8% to $12.1 billion, in addition to bumps in operating cash flow and operating income, primarily reflecting strong cable communications and cable networks results and the consolidation of NBCUniversal in January. Excluding … Read More »

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Regal Entertainment Reports 1Q Loss

Regal Entertainment Group, the nation’s largest exhibition chain, reported first-quarter results that were down across the board compared with last year. Revenue for the quarter ended March 31 was $570.9 million, compared with $719.8 million in 2010. Much like fellow … Read More »

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IMAX Q1 Down Due To Box Office Slump

The box office’s poor performance during the first part of the year has impacted IMAX, too. The giant-screen exhibitor reported first-quarter results this morning that saw revenue and earnings down. “The first quarter lacked event films, particularly compared to the … Read More »

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Sub Gains Boost Time Warner Cable 1Q

By | Thursday April 28, 2011 @ 6:49am PDT

Time Warner Cable revenue grew 5% to $4.8 billion during the first quarter, the nation’s second-largest cable company said today in reporting earnings, citing gains in subscribers to its high-speed broadband and phone services. Net income grew from $214 million … Read More »

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Discovery Admits Problems At Oprah’s OWN & Planet Green; But Q1 Beats The Street

UPDATE 7:45 AM: Discovery CEO David Zaslav acknowledged this morning that ratings for OWN, the joint venture cable channel with Oprah Winfrey, were “below our expectations” — and that his company will have to spend Read More »

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Viacom Credits ‘Rango’ For Up Earnings; Warns It Can Take Or Leave DWA Animation

UPDATE, 6:55 AM: CEO Philippe Dauman says that Paramount is starting to make business plans for 2013 and 2014 and “can accommodate having Dreamworks [Animation] titles in or out” after their distribution deal expires next year. He told analysts, in a conference call, that the companies have “a strong relationship” and that he’s ready to discuss a new deal whenever Dreamworks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg is ready. But he added that Paramount’s “development pipeline is strong” and will include more animated films following the success of its first effort, Rango.

Dauman also says that the company plans “a very significant increase” over the next year or 2 in the amount of original shows it will run on cable channel Spike. He added that he expects “significant year-over-year gains” in upfront ad sales across Viacom’s networks.

PREVIOUS, 5:11 AM: Helped by a strengthening ad market, TV hits including MTV’s Jersey Shore, and a Paramount Pictures slate that included Rango, Viacom far exceeded Wall Street analysts’ forecasts for its financial performance in the quarter that ended in March. The entertainment giant reported net earnings of $376 million, up 47% vs. the same period last year, on revenues of $3.3 billion, up 20%. That translated into 72 cents in earnings per share. The consensus forecast among analysts put earnings of 61 cents with revenues of $3 billion.

“This was an outstanding quarter, reflecting our continued operating momentum,” Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman said in a prepared statement. Read More »

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DreamWorks Animation Pins Hopes On ‘Kung Fu Panda 2′ After 1Q Earnings Fall Short

UPDATE, 2:30 PM: Don’t look for DreamWorks Animation to produce additional movie genre parodies similar to its send up of mob films in Shark Tale, monster movies in Monsters vs. Aliens, and superhero films in Megamind. “All shared … Read More »

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