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Earnings: Discovery Posts Higher 1Q Revenue, Profit, Expects OWN to Break Even in Cash Flow This Year

Discovery beats estimates

Discovery Communications Inc. earned higher revenue and profit in the first quarter as its networks improved ratings.

The company said revenues increased 7 percent to $1.156 billion, compared to $1.51 billion expected by analysts, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. Net income increased 4 percent to $231 million, up from $221 million, or 57 cents per share a year ago, Reuters said.

In an earnings call, the company boasted of four consecutive years of growth and said it now has 2 billion viewers worldwide.

Discovery also said it expects Oprah Winfrey‘s OWN to meet its previoulsy stated goal of breaking even in cash flow in the second half of this year, Discovery president and CEO David Zaslav said.

OWN Viewership was up 3 percent in its key women 25-54 demographic in the first quarter, even though the first-quarter of 2012 included OWN’s highest-rated broadcast, Winfrey’s interview with Whitney Houston‘s daughter.

As of 10 a.m. ET Tuesday, shares of Discovery stock were down 3.18 percent to $76.51.