Television

26.1 per cent downturn in filmed entertainment dampens Viacom Inc Q3 results 7.4 per cent

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BENGALURU:  Viacom Inc. (Viacom) reported 7.4 per cent lower revenue in the quarter ended 30 June 2014 (Q3 for Viacom, or the ‘current quarter’) to USD 3421 million from USD 3693 million in the year ago quarter ended 30 June 2013. The company’s operating income dropped 5.6 per cent to USD 611 million in Q3 of 2014 as compared to the USD 647 million in Q3 of the previous year. Adjusted net earnings from continuing operations attributable to Viacom decreased to USD 618 million.

Viacom’s filmed entertainment division reported 26.1 per cent drop in revenue to USD 856 million in the current quarter as compared to the USD 1158 million reported for corresponding quarter of the previous fiscal, driven by a 43 per cent decrease in theatrical revenues due to the number and timing of releases, says the company.

The impact of this downturn was softened to some extent by Viacom’s media networks segment, which reported a 0.9 per cent increase in revenue in Q3 or the current year to USD 2591 million from USD 2569 million in the corresponding year ago quarter, driven by higher advertising revenues, which rose 1 per cent domestically and 2 per cent on a worldwide basis reveals Viacom. The company’s press release says that its worldwide affiliate fee revenues were flat in the quarter, as rate increases were more than offset by lower revenues from certain distribution arrangements which are affected by the timing of available programming. Excluding the impact of these distribution arrangements, the domestic affiliate revenue growth rate in the quarter was in the low double-digits.

Viacom executive chairman Sumner M. Redstone said, “Viacom continues its mission to develop the world’s most exciting media brands and compelling entertainment. As the industry landscape continues to evolve, our business is very well positioned.”

Viacom president and chief executive officer Philippe Dauman said, “It was a solid quarter for Viacom. We delivered nearly USD 1 billion to shareholders through buybacks and dividends and continued to build on our success in creating outstanding content and focused brands that connect deeply with audiences across all platforms. Our Media Networks distribution relationships continue to expand, providing broader opportunities for fans to enjoy Viacom’s content. Successful series and high-profile event programming on our networks create powerful experiences for audiences and valuable opportunities for advertisers, while driving industry-leading social engagement. We announced our agreement to acquire major British broadcaster Channel 5 in the quarter, which will increase our presence in an important global market. Paramount is poised for an outstanding summer, kicked off by Transformers: Age of Extinction which is already a record-setting global hit and the number one film of all time in China. In addition, the highly-anticipated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles premieres Friday for fans around the world.”

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