Discovery Reports Higher Earnings in Second Quarter - Broadcasting & Cable

Discovery Reports Higher Earnings in Second Quarter

U.S. ad revenues climb 5%
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Discovery Communications reported higher second quarter net income despite being hurt by foreign currency changes.

Net income rose 43% to $408 million, or 66 cents a share, from $286 million, or 44 cents a share.

Revenues rose 3% to $1.7 billion. The company says that they would have been up 6% excluding the effects of the strong dollar.

The company said that in addition to improved operating results in the quarter, it had currency-related transactional gains, a decrease in taxes and lower equity-based compensation.

“Discovery posted a solid quarter of growth and financial results by investing in premium and diversified content that fuels the passion of superfans on pay-TV, free-to-air, direct-to-consumer and digital platforms. Our differentiated portfolio of nonfiction, sports and children’s content in more than 220 markets positions Discovery for continued growth and shareholder value creation in the months and years to come,” said CEO David Zaslav.

Operating income at Discovery’s U.S. networks was up 10% to $544 million.

Revenues were up 7% to $873 million, with distribution revenue up 8% to $386 million and advertising revenues up 5% to $471 million. The ad revenue gain was the result of higher prices and better inventory management, offset by lower ratings.

Operating income at the international networks were down 6% to $249 million. Revenue fell 1%. Currency changes reduced revenue 4% and cut operating income growth by 10%, the company said.

The company is expected to provide an outlook for the full year during its earnings call Tuesday morning.

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