Lionsgate Q2 Earnings Outperform Wall Street Expectations Thanks to Starz Growth

Starz added 1.3 million subscribers during the second quarter

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Lionsgate Entertainment Corp. on Thursday reported second-quarter earnings that were above Wall Street’s expectations thanks, in part to the strong performance Starz saw during the quarter.

The film and TV studio reported adjusted per-share earnings of 22 cents, which was far better than analysts’ expectations for a loss of 15 cents per share, according to estimates gathered by Yahoo Finance. The company’s earnings were also an improvement compared with the 7 cents per-share earnings it reported during the same quarter a year ago.

Lionsgate’s revenue for the quarter came to $901 million, above the $891 million Wall Street analysts were expecting. The studio’s second-quarter revenue fell short, however, compared with the $940.8 million in revenue it reported last year for the same time period.

“We’re pleased to report a strong quarter with robust free cash flow and outstanding growth at Starz,” said Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer in a statement.  “Our great results at Starz reflect our slate of hit premium programming, strong over the top subscriber growth and retention, and healthy gains in our MVPD business.  Coupled with the global expansion strategy we have begun to execute, we see a very clear path to outsized value creation for our platform.”

Lionsgate said in its press release that Starz reported record growth in the quarter driven by a sequential increase of 1.3 million subscribers to a total of 25.1 million domestic subscribers with strong gains in both over-the-top and traditional MVPD subscribers.

Revenue for Lionsgate’s media networks increased by 5 percent year-over-year to $377.3 million due to the strong OTT subscriber revenue, and TV production revenues came in at $152.1 million in the quarter. The motion picture division, however, saw revenues decreased by 2 percent to $379.0 million.