NBCU Reports Solid TV Results

Comcast’s NBCUniversal unit barely pulled in the same revenues as a year ago for its second-quarter results -- in part due to its lower-performing filmed entertainment unit.

NBCUniversal’s cable, broadcast and theme parks businesses, however, earned good results in the period.

Cable networks, NBCUniversal’s biggest business unit, grew 2.6% in revenue to $2.48 billion -- with a 4.2% increase in distribution revenue and a 14.3% gain in content licensing fees. But advertising revenues for its networks sank 2.2% during the period. Operating cash flow overall was up 6.3% to $914 million.

Broadcast television grew 4.9% to $1.8 billion -- mostly due to higher retransmission revenues and content licensing agreements. But like its cable networks, advertising sank. The NBC network and stations slipped 1.7% in advertising revenue -- which the company says was the result of fewer hours for “The Voice,” compared to the same period a year before. Operating cash flow climbed 16.2% to $240 million.

Filmed entertainment witnessed a sharp 15.3% decline in revenue to $1.2 billion, due to lower theatrical revenue resulting from fewer theatrical releases. Still, operating cash flow was up to $195 million from $162 million.

Theme parks' revenue was up 12.8% to $615 million from higher attendance and higher guest spending. Overall, Comcast Corp revenue was up 3.5% to $16.8 billion, with net income up 14.8% to $1.99 billion.

The company continued to lose video customers -- some 144,000 -- to land at 22.4 million. Revenue from its video cable business was up 1.2% to $5.24 billion. Broadband business continue to be a strong revenue gainer -- up 9.7% to $2.8 billion.

Phone business revenues were up 1.3% to $922 million. Advertising revenue for Comcast systems was up 7.5% to $599 million.

Comcast Corp., which is looking to buy Time Warner Cable in a $45.2 billion deal, witnessed its stock rise 1.6% to $54.70 in midday trading.
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