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Fox’s Net Drops Despite Gains at TV Businesses

(Image credit: The Texanist)

Fox reported lower earnings for its fiscal second quarter despite improvements at its television businesses.

Net income fell to $224 million, or 37 cents a share, from $300 million, or 48 cents, a year ago. The company blamed the decline on a big gain in “other” revenue a year ago.

Revenue rose 8% to $4.09 billion. 

Advertising revenue increased 14% because of record political advertising at the Fox TV stations, linear and digital growth at Fox News and adding streaming service Tubi to the mix.

Over the course of the year. Fox generated $440 million in political adverting.

Affiliate ad revenue rose 6%. 

Other revenue fell 14% because of lost sub-licensing rights as college football games were canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Cable network earnings before interest, taxes, dividends and amortization, were up 3% to $571 million. Revenue rose 1% to $1.49 billion. Ad revenue rose 31% to $441 million, but the gains were offset by lower affiliate and other revenue.

Fox’s TV segment narrowed its loss to $185 million from $214 million a years ago. Revenue rose 13% to $2.56 billion. 

The Fox TV stations collected $190 million in political ad revenue during the quarter and $260 million during the first half of Fox's fiscal year, three times greater than during the previous Presidential election cycle.

“Once again, the company delivered exceptional operating and financial results. Fox Television Stations, Fox News Media and Tubi all experienced record highs in the December quarter, led by an unprecedented political advertising cycle at our local television stations, strong digital growth at Fox News Media and an influx of new advertisers at Tubi,” said CEO Lachlan Murdoch. 

“We are looking forward to a return to normal entertainment and sports production schedules, and we are grateful to our colleagues and business partners who, during the pandemic, have ensured that our viewers are informed and engaged. Through it all, the fundamentals of our business and our strategic focus have never been stronger,” Murdoch said.