AMC Networks' Q3 Profts Hampered by Dish Takedown

AMC Networks reported lower profits in the third quarter after losing viewership and affiliate revenue because of its dispute with Dish Network.

Net income was $36.6 million, or 51 cents a share, down 8.5% from $40 million, or 55 cents a share a year ago.

As part of last month’s settlement in a lawsuit over the Voom high definition service (which became a part of AMC when it was spun off from Cablevision Systems), AMC and Cablevision received $700 million in cash and AMC’s cable channels, taken down form Dish since the summer, were restored.

Despite the Dish Network takedown, revenues rose 17% to $322 million on new digital and new licensing deals.

“We've enjoyed a long relationship with Dish Network and are delighted to partner with them again in bringing our channels and programming to their subscribers,” said CEO Josh Sapan in a statement. “While the litigation and associated carriage dispute impacted our third quarter financials, that issue is behind us and we are fully focused on continuing our strategy of investing in quality original programming.”

Sapan added that: “We continue to see very healthy demand for our popular programming from advertisers and viewers alike. We're particularly proud of the stellar performance of AMC's The Walking Dead, which premiered last month to become the biggest show of the fall season among adults 18-49, outperforming broadcast and cable hits including Modern Family, The Big Bang Theory, The Voice and Jersey Shore.”

Cash flow for the company’s national networks—AMC, We TV, IFC and Sundance Channel--fell 5.5% to $116.4 million.

Revenues rose 18.5% to $305.2 million. Affiliate fees rose 24.3% because of digital and licensing revenue, offset by the decline in affiliate fees caused by the Dish disconnect.

Advertising revenues rose 9.1% to $107 million. The company said the increase was due to strong demand for original programming, primarily at AMC.

Jon Lafayette

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.