Cable TV

Comcast Q1-2015 revenue up 2.6%, operating income up 9%

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BENGALURU: Comcast Corporation reported 2.6 per cent growth in consolidated revenue in Q1-2015 (quarter ended 31 March, 2015, current quarter) to $17853 million as compared to the $17408 million in the corresponding year ago quarter. Comcast consolidated operating income increased nine per cent in Q1-2015 to $3890 million from $3568 million in Q1-2014.

The company’s Cable Communications, Filmed Entertainment and Theme Parks segments reported growth in revenue, while Cable Networks Broadcast Television and NBU Universal segments reported a y-o-y fall in revenue.

Comcast chairman and CEO Brian L Roberts said, “We are off to a great start in 2015, with 7.6 per cent operating cash flow growth and record quarterly free cash flow. Cable had a terrific quarter, once again reflecting strong results in high-speed Internet and business services. We have made progress in transforming the customer experience while delivering improved products and innovations faster than ever before. At NBC Universal, we had another excellent quarter, led by Super Bowl XLIX, which was the most-watched television program of all time, along with the tremendous box office success of Fifty Shades of Grey, and the exceptional performance of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Diagon Alley in Orlando. We begin 2015 with great momentum and remain confident that we are well positioned with an impressive portfolio of complementary businesses to continue our strong performance and drive shareholder value.”

Segment Results

Cable Communications

The company’s largest segment by revenue, Cable Communications reported 6.3 per cent revenue growth in Q1-2015 to $11430 million as compared to the $10757 million in Q1-2014, led by 21.5 per cent growth by its Business Services segment. Within the Cable Communications segment, revenue from Video grew three per cent to $5331 million in Q1-2015 from $5178 million in Q1-2015; High-speed Internet grew 10.7 per cent to $3044 million from $2750 million in Q1-2014; Revenue from Voice declined 1.5 per cent to $906 million from $920 million in Q1-2014; Business services revenue increased 21.5 per cent to $1114 million in Q1-2015 from $917 million in Q1-2014; Advertising Revenue fell 0.6 per cent to $504 million from $507 million in Q1-2014; Revenue from ‘Other’ grew 9.5 per cent to $531 million from $485 million in the corresponding year ago quarter.

NBC Universal

Revenue for NBC Universal decreased four per cent to $6604 million in the first quarter of 2015 compared to $6876 million in the first quarter of 2014. Excluding $376 million of revenue generated by the broadcast of the NFL’s Super Bowl in the first quarter of 2015 and $1100 million of revenue generated by the Sochi Olympics in the first quarter of 2014, revenue increased 7.9 per cent. Operating Cash Flow increased 14.0 per cent to $1494 million compared to $1311 million in Q1-2014, driven by strong results at Theme Parks and Broadcast Television. 

Cable Networks

For the first quarter of 2015, revenue from the Cable Networks segment decreased 5.9 per cent to $2359 million as compared to $2505 million in Q1-2015. Excluding $257 million of revenue generated by the Sochi Olympics in Q1-2014, revenue increased 4.9 per cent, reflecting a 4.8 per cent increase in distribution revenue and a 4.3 per cent increase in advertising revenue. Excluding a benefit from a reduction in deferred advertising revenue, advertising growth would have been stable as audience ratings declines were offset by higher prices and volume. Operating cash flow increased 0.3 per cent to $898 million compared to $895 million in Q1-2014, reflecting lower  programming and production costs due to the broadcast of the Sochi Olympics in the first quarter of 2014, partially offset by lower revenue.

Broadcast Television

For the first quarter of 2015, revenue from the Broadcast Television segment decreased 14.2 per cent to $2248 million compared to $2621 million in Q1-2014. Excluding $376 million of revenue generated by the NFL’s Super Bowl in Q1-2015, as well as $846 million of revenue generated by the Sochi Olympics in Q1-2014, revenue increased 5.5 per cent, driven by a 5.5 per cent increase in advertising revenue, as well as higher retransmission consent fees.  Operating cash flow increased 48.9 per cent to $182 million compared to $122 million in Q1-2014, reflecting lower programming and production costs due to the broadcast of the Sochi Olympics in Q1-2014 and a profitable Super Bowl, partially offset by lower revenue.

Filmed Entertainment

For Q1-2015, revenue from the Filmed Entertainment segment increased seven per cent to $1446 million compared to the $1351 million in Q1-2014, reflecting higher content licensing and home entertainment revenue, partially offset by lower theatrical revenue. Operating cash flow increased 1.7 per cent to $293 million compared to $288 million in Q1-2014, reflecting higher revenue, partially offset by increased marketing expenses ahead of the release of Furious 7 early in the second quarter.

Theme Parks

For Q1-2015, revenue from the Theme Parks segment increased 33.7 per cent to $651 million compared to $487 million in the first quarter of 2014, reflecting higher guest attendance and per capita spending, driven by the continued success of Orlando’s The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley. First quarter operating cash flow increased 54.6 per cent to $263 million compared to $170 million in the same period last year, reflecting higher revenue, partially offset by an increase in operating costs to support the new attractions.

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