There are a lot of moving pieces in AMC Networks’ report, following its acquisitions of Chellomedia and BBC America. Still, investors likely will be pleased by the basic numbers at the home of popular series include Walking Dead and Better Call Saul : The programming company reported net income of $77.62 million, up 119% vs the last three months of 2013, on revenues of $609.4 million, up 40%.
Analysts expected the top line to hit $602.4 million. Earnings from continuing operation, at $1.06 a share, beat Wall Street’s target for 99 cents.
“The strong performance of our original programming with record ratings at our national networks has led to continued increases in affiliate fees and advertising revenues,” CEO Josh Sapan says. AMC’s international expansion “continues to be a focus” enabling the company to “capitalize long term on international pay TV growth and drive long-term value for our shareholders.”
At the U.S. networks — including AMC, WE tv, BBC America, IFC, and Sundance TV — adjusted cash flow improved 72.1 % to $190.3 million on revenues of $499.8 million, +19.7%. Ad sales were up 24.3% to $255 million with the addition of BBC America. Revenues from cable and satellite companies was up 15.3% to $245 million. Programming expenses were “essentially flat” as cuts in some outlays, including for marketing, were offset by increases for BBC America.
An interesting side note for those tracking the debate over cord cutting: The company’s most popular network, AMC, had 95 million subscribers at the end of 2014, a loss of 600,000 from the end of September and down 2.4 million from the end of 2013.
As for the International and Other unit — which includes IFC Films — cash flow of $3.1 million contrasts with a $13.1 million loss in the last three months of 2013, while revenues increased 516% to $110.3 million. AMC attributes most of the growth to the acquisition of Chellomedia.
AMC picked up Chellomedia at the end of January 2014. Its BBC America partnership with BBC Worldwide took place in October.