There’s nothing in this mornings Q2 report that’s likely to change the minds of investors who have taken Viacom‘s share price down about 6.4% so far this year. Net earnings attributable to Viacom at $610M fell 5.1% vs the period last year on revenues of $3.42B, -7.4%. Analysts expected the top line to hit $3.56B. Adjusted earnings at $1.42 a share missed the Street’s $1.44 target.
CEO Philippe Dauman called it “a solid quarter for Viacom” touting the $1B that the company returned to shareholders via buybacks and dividends as it “continued to build on our success in creating outstanding content.”
The main Media Networks business suffered a bit from the timing of a few of its distribution deals. It reported a 3% drop in operating income, to $1.12B, on revenues of $2.95B, +1%. Ad sales rose 1% domestically and 2% worldwide. Payments from pay TV distributors were flat. But if you factor out the distribution timing issues, “the domestic affiliate revenue growth rate in the quarter was in the low double-digits.”
Meanwhile, Paramount showed a steep revenue decline in comparison to last year when it distributed Iron Man 3. Sales fell 26% to $856M although the reduction in film and distribution expenses lifted operating income by 224% to $55M. Theatrical revenues fell 43% while worldwide home entertainment dropped 24%.