Paramount Global’s D2C/streaming business saw 39% year-over-year growth in this year’s first quarter, the company reported.
The growth was driven by 50% growth in subscription revenue, to $1.1 billion, and 15% growth in advertising, to $398 million.
But with higher investment in flagship streamer Paramount+, the D2C business's operating income before depreciation and amortization (OIBDA) increased by $55 million, to $511 million, from $456 million a year ago.
Revenue at Paramount’s largest unit, TV media, declined 8% to $5.2 billion, largely due to the comparison with Q1 2022, when CBS broadcast Super Bowl LV. TV media advertising declined 11%, to $2.26 billion, affiliate and subscription revenue dipped 1%, to $2.1 billion, and licensing declined 15%, to $870 million. Adjusted OIBDA declined 15%, to $1.3 billion.
Filmed entertainment revenue decreased 15%, to $588 million, on declines in theatrical and licensing, and OIBDA decreased by $35 million.
Paramount Global saw overall revenue decline 1% year-over-year in the quarter, to $7.27 billion, missing analysts’ estimates of $7.38 billion. Net earnings fell to $433 million, from $911 million a year earlier. Excluding items, profit of 60 cents per share in the quarter exceeded analysts’ expectation of 51 cents.
The company's stock was down 6% on Tuesday and 23% by mid-day Thursday.
On the plus side, Paramount+ added 4.1 million subscribers, to total 60 million, and its revenue grew 65% YoY, driven by both advertising and subscription gains.
Paramount+ logged the most U.S. subscription signups among premium streaming services in Q1, according to Antenna.
Paramount Global CEO Bob Bakish told investors that Paramount+ will expand to India this year through its joint venture Viacom18.
Pluto TV, Paramount’s free, ad-supported streamer (FAST), saw monthly active users grow to 80 million -- up from nearly 79 million at the end of 2022 -- and its global viewing hours increased 35% YoY.