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Crown Media Profits Increase in First Quarter

Crown Media Holdings, which owns the Hallmark Channels, reported higher earnings as ad sales showed a double digit increase.

Net income rose 54% to 18.5 million, or five cents per share, from $12 million, or three cents per share, in the first quarter of 2014.

Revenue rose 11% to $100.5 million. Ad revenue increased 14% to $79.1 million. Subscriber revenue fell 4% to $20.9 million.

Marketing expenses increased $3.5 million in the first quarter from a year ago because of the campaign promoting the new series The Good Witch.

"Differentiation of our channels combined with strong ratings performance from our original programming during the first quarter of 2015 resulted in double-digit growth in revenue and Adjusted EBITDA. The Company leveraged the ratings momentum from the holidays and launched Countdown to Valentine's Day in 2015 to drive our bottom line," Bill Abbott, CEO of Crown Media Family Networks, said in a statement. "Forging ahead to second quarter, we expect this momentum to continue with the return of our original primetime series, When Calls the Heart, on Hallmark Channel and five mystery wheels on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries."