New shows including Into The Badlands helped AMC Networks deliver solid financials for Q4, ahead of consensus expectations among analysts.
The programmer reported net income of $90.1 million, up 16.1% vs the last three months of 2014, on revenues of $679.0 million, up 11.4%. That topped the $675.0 million that analysts anticipated. Earnings at $1.23 a share also topped expectations for $1.18.
“Our strategy of creating compelling original, high-quality programming continues to deliver strong financial results, including double digit increases in revenue and adjusted operating cash flow” for the full year, CEO Josh Sapan says. New shows including Fear the Walking Dead, Better Call Saul and Into the Badlands, “broke ratings records” while AMC continued its expansion in Europe and Latin America.
At the main National Networks unit, rising programming costs and expenses for BBC America contributed to a 2.6% fall in operating income to $173.1 million. But revenues were up 12.5% to $562.3 million. Ad sales improved 13.4% while distribution revenues, helped by price increases, rose 11.6%.
The company attributes the boost in ad sales to “the timing of the airing of original programming,” which included Badlands.
Total U.S. subscribers across the company’s networks fell by 1.2 million in the three month period to 388 million, AMC reports citing Nielsen data. AMC was down by 200,000 while IFC and Sundance each lost 500,000. WEtv and BBC America both were unchanged.
The International and Other operation — which includes IFC Films — reported that its operating loss decreased by 33.6% to $12.5 million with revenues up 8.1% to $119.2 million. The company attributes the top line growth to “an increase at IFC Films and AMC Networks International.” But it was tempered by weakening overseas currencies and increasing operating expenses.