Q3-16: Domestic declines, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles retard Viacom numbers

BENGALURU: Viacom Inc., reported 1.6 percent growth in revenue for the quarter ended 30 June 2016 (Q3-16, current quarter). The company reported revenue of $3,107 million in the current quarter as compared to $3,058 million in the corresponding year ago quarter. The company says that Filmed Entertainment gains more than offset a decrease in Media Networks revenues.

Media Networks revenues were $2,513 million in Q3-16, a decline of 3.2 percent as compared $2,597 million in the corresponding year ago quarter. Domestic advertising revenues decreased 4 percent, as pricing increases were more than offset by softer ratings at some of Viacom’s networks compared to the previous year, and a continuing strategic reduction of unit loads. International advertising revenues increased 13 percent, driven principally by growth in Europe.

Absent an adverse 6 percent impact of foreign exchange, international advertising revenues increased 19 percent. Domestic affiliate revenues decreased 10 percent, principally reflecting a difficult comparison with the timing of revenues from certain distribution agreements in the prior year. International affiliate revenues increased 9 percent, and absent an adverse 3 percent impact of foreign exchange, international affiliate revenues increased 12 percent.

Filmed Entertainment revenues grew 30 percent to $621 million, driven by gains in license fees and theatrical revenues. Worldwide theatrical revenues increased to $91 million in the quarter, reflecting the June release of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows. License fees grew 39 percent to $297 million in the quarter, driven by the licensing of certain titles for subscription video-on-demand services and revenues from Paramount Television productions.

Quarterly operating income declined 29 percent to $769 million. Media Networks adjusted operating income decreased 22 percent $872 million, reflecting revenue declines as well as an increase in programming and marketing expenses. Filmed Entertainment reported an adjusted operating loss of $26 million, reflecting the timing of expenses and theatrical performance in the quarter. Quarterly net earnings attributable to Viacom decreased to $432 million and adjusted net earnings declined to $419 million. Diluted earnings per share for the quarter were $1.09 and adjusted diluted earnings per share were $1.05.

Company speak

Viacom executive chairman, president and CEO Philippe Dauman said, "In the quarter, Viacom continued to execute on our strategic plan by increasing investment in high-quality original content, enhancing our connection to audiences, accelerating the growth of data-driven advertising products and further expanding our unmatched global reach. Ratings increased at several of Viacom's major networks, including Nickelodeon, Nick at Nite, VH1 and TV Land, and ratings trends at nearly all of our networks showed sequential improvement as we successfully completed a very strong upfront across our brands. Internationally, our media networks are driving strong double-digit revenue growth, with new channel launches, growing distribution partnerships and substantial ad sales gains. Viacom's third quarter results were impacted by the underperformance of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows."

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