The premium networks company had a lot to crow about in the period including the success of its series The White Queen. But it’s still growing, and that resulted in investments that prevented much of the additional cash coming in from reaching the bottom line. Starz reported net income of $52.2M, -7.4%, even though revenues rose 11.2% to $446.1M. That number topped the $406.1M that analysts expected. But earnings per share at 43 cents were a penny shy of the consensus forecast. The Starz network ended the quarter with 22M subscribers, +5.8% vs last year, while Encore had 35M, +2%. Revenues at the networks operation were basically flat at $319.9M as higher rates were partially offset by fewer subs under “consignment agreements,” the company says. But Starz Distribution revenues were +56.8% to $117.6M with help from agreements to distribute The Weinstein Company titles and AMC’s The Walking Dead. But outlays for investments in films and TV programs increase 67% to $110.1M. “We are in the early stages of executing on our strategy to create compelling original programming that when combined with exclusive first-run movies offers a significant value proposition for our distributors and consumers,” CEO Chris Albrecht says.
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