Despite a drop in domestic ad revenue, AMC Networks' earnings were up compared to a year ago, when a charge cut into its results.
First quarter net income rose to $136 million, or $1.98 per share, from $113 million, or $1.55 per share, a year ago. The increase was the result of a $48 million charge taken a year ago when debt was refinanced. Adjusted earnings were $145 million, down from $153 million a year ago.
Revenues rose 1.9% to $720 million.
Operating income was down 6.4% to $249.6 million at AMC’s national networks from a year ago.
Revenues were up 2.8%. Distribution revenues were up 9.8% to $368 million, including new licensing revenues.
Advertising revenues decreased 6.2% to $248 million. The decrease was related to lower ratings and the timing of the airing of original programming.
“AMC Networks is off to a solid start in 2017 with revenue growth and significant free cash flow generation in the first quarter that sets the stage for continued progress for the remainder of the year,” said CEO Josh Sapan. “Our disciplined approach to investing in high-quality content is building our brands and positioning us well with advertisers and both traditional and new distribution platforms. Looking ahead, we remain focused on costs coupled with smart content investments that will create value for our shareholders over the near and long-term."
Broadcasting & Cable Newsletter
The smarter way to stay on top of broadcasting and cable industry. Sign up below
Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.