Time Warner Earnings: The Hangover
Time Warner’s second-quarter earnings beat analysts’ expectations. But that’s not saying much, really. Profits fell 34 percent to $519 million, or 43 cents a share, from $792 million, or 66 cents a share, a year earlier. Revenue was down nine percent at $6.8 billion.
Still, both figures exceeded the estimates of analysts, who had expected earnings of 37 cents on revenue of $6.97 billion, according to Thomson Reuters.
Revenue at the conglomerate’s studio, Warner Bros., fell nine percent to $2.3 billion despite some surprise box office hits like “The Hangover.” Meanwhile, revenue at the Time Warner (TWX) networks division was up five percent to almost $3 billion, despite a three percent drop in ad revenue.
And what of AOL? Time Warner’s soon-to-be-spun-off Internet division continued to be an albatross hung round the company’s neck. Its revenue dropped 24 percent to $804 million, dragged down by weak advertising and a continued decline in subscribers. Operating income fell 28 percent to $165 million. (See table below; click to enlarge.)
In a statement, CEO Jeff Bewkes said that Time Warner is “on track to spin off AOL to our stockholders around the end of the year. Separating AOL will benefit both companies–enabling Time Warner to concentrate fully on our core content businesses and improving AOL’s operational and strategic flexibility.”
Let’s hope so.