Following quarter after quarter of awful performance, including a weak first quarter down 49% because of a too-costly Winter Olympics, NBC Universal turned in the best 2nd quarter revenue performance of all GE units — up 13%. This may be too late to matter much to GE but it’s good news for Comcast which could take possession of the TV/film company by the end of the year if it receives regulatory approval for the deal. (It recently won European Union approval but awaits the FCC’s.) NBCU’s profit hit $607 million, with revenue rising 5% to $3.75 billion. News reports say GE chairman/CEO Jeff Immelt singled out NBCU’s “good revenue and profit growth” — including the broadcast biz where revenue rose 1% and profit 6% helped by a better ad upfront market (+18% in dollars booked) and scatter ad market (+20%). Even NBCU’s O&O’s gained 25%. And once again cable was NBCU’s primary driver of growth, with revenue up 7% and profit up 10%.
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