MGM Q1 Revenue Dips Without ‘Spectre’ Tailwinds

Mini-major studio also added Google exec David Krane to its board


Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s revenue dipped 15 percent and net income fell 41 percent for the three months ended March 31, as the mini-major studio didn’t benefit from the overhang of a holiday season James Bond film, as it did last year.

While MGM released “Spectre” in November 2015, which went on to gross $880 million worldwide, the studio didn’t have a major tentpole late last year. That was the single biggest contributor to the shortfall the company experienced from its film division, which had a 36 percent drop in revenue from $243 million to $155 million.

Meanwhile, the studio’s TV division, led by reality TV pioneer Mark Burnett, continues to grow, increasing its revenue 75 percent year-over-year in the first quarter. However, MGM’s TV revenue of $86 million was a little more than half of what its film side earned. New episodes of some of MGM’s most prominent TV shows, including “Survivor,” “The Voice” and “Vikings” helped boost its revenue.

During the quarter, MGM became the first studio to sign a content partnership with disappearing message social network Snapchat, which will have the company develop original shows for its Snapchat Discover platform. Snapchat Shows are original, 4-5 minute, scripted or unscripted stand-alone programs shot vertically with Snapchat’s preferred orientation in mind. They include both old and new IP and cover a variety of genres, from documentaries to reality TV to dramas.

Earlier this month, MGM completed its $1 billion acquisition of the 81 percent of premium cable network Epix it didn’t own, purchasing stakes from Viacom and Lionsgate.

On MGM’s earnings call, CEO Gary Barber announced the company’s newest board member, Google Ventures CEO and Managing Partner David Krane. He oversees the funds global activities, including investments in Uber, Nest and Blue Bottle Coffee. Krane has previously worked at tech giants Apple, Qualcomm and Yahoo!