AMC Networks Ended 2021 With More Than 9 Million Paid Streaming Subscribers

“The Walking Dead’s” final season started in final quarter of 2021

Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon – The Walking Dead _ Season 11, Episode 8 – Photo Credit: Josh Stringer/AMC

AMC Networks ended 2021 with “more than” 9 million paid customers across its SVOD platforms — AMC+, Acorn TV, Shudder, Sundance Now and ALLBLK — just like executives previously said they were on track to do.

The company posted fourth quarter adjusted diluted earnings per share of 54 cents on $803.7 million in revenue. Those both exceeded media analysts’ estimates.

AMC’s Q4 revenue grew 3% year over year. Subscription revenues increased 11% domestically thanks to streaming growth.

Company operating income was $64 million. With adjustments, that rose to $103 million. Either way you look at that stat, it was down more than 20% vs. the comparable quarter in 2020.

During the fourth quarter, “The Walking Dead” aired eight episodes of its 24-episode final season.

“2021 was a strong, pivotal year for AMC Networks. We met or exceeded all of our guidance metrics, delivering the highest revenue in our company’s history and full-year U.S. advertising and subscription growth reinforcing the strength of our core business,” interim CEO Matt Black said in a statement accompanying AMC’s financials. “We ended the year with more than nine million paid streaming subscribers, a significant milestone driven by the strength of our streaming brands and the depth of content within each of our offerings, and with our acquisition of global anime content distributor Sentai and the HIDIVE anime streaming service, we deepened our position as the global leader in targeted streaming.”

“Looking ahead, 2022 will be the biggest year for original content in our history, including the highly-anticipated returns of ‘Better Call Saul’ and ‘Killing Eve,’” he continued. “We have great confidence in our unique streaming model and we’re more confident than ever that we’re pursuing the right strategy for our company, for the audiences we serve, and for our shareholders.”

Shares in AMC Networks (AMCX) closed Tuesday at $44.66. The U.S. stock markets will officially reopen at 9:30 a.m. ET.

AMC Networks executives will host a conference call at 8:30 a.m. ET to discuss the quarter and full year in greater detail.