21st Century Fox Cable Operations Lift Q2 Earnings Despite Drop in Film Revenue

Company reports $0.44 per share for second quarter of 2016

Media giant 21st Century Fox reported mixed earnings results for second quarter 2016 Monday, reporting $0.44 earnings per share on $7.38 billion in revenue. Analyst expectations for the company had been $0.44 on $7.53 billion, according to Thomson Reuters.

Fox credited its cable television business and gains in advertising at Fox Broadcasting with driving growth.

Fox last week announced that it would initiate a buyout program aimed at cutting payroll in its TV and film businesses by $250 million.

The $7.38 billion was down 1 percent from the same quarter a year ago. The company blamed the revenue decline in lower revenues from the filmed entertainment business and the loss of revenue from Shine Group, which was spun off last year in a merger with Endemol.

Fox reported lower-than-expected earnings in November for the the first fiscal quarter of 2016. The poor box-office performance of the film studio’s “Fantastic Four” reboot had been blamed for the underperformance.

Shares in Fox were flat in after-hours trading Monday.

“During the quarter, our cable business continued to drive our growth, delivering sustained increases in domestic affiliate fees and gains in advertising revenue, underscoring the power of our global brands and distinctive programming,” Executive Chairmen Rupert and Lachlan Murdoch said in a statement.

“In addition, we are encouraged by progress at the FOX Broadcast Network, which delivered significant advertising gains from both our sports and entertainment programming. At our television production business, we deliberately invested in a higher number of new original series this quarter in support of the network’s new primetime schedule and in creating valuable long-term assets for the Company. We continued with our top priority of delivering standout storytelling and are proud of our industry-leading Academy Award nominations as well as Golden Globe wins across both our film and television businesses.”

James Murdoch is CEO of 21st Century Fox and serves as co-chairman of the company with his brother Lachlan.

News Corp., the media company from which Fox was spun off in 2014, reported mixed earnings results last week of $0.20 per share Thursday on $2.16 billion in revenue.

According to consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters, the company had been expected to report $0.21 per share on $2.13 billion in revenue.

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