Viacom Earnings Jump in Second Quarter

Viacom (VIA) reported a 52% jump in net income in the second quarter on what it attributed to improving trends in the advertising market, continued strength of its affiliate revenues and lower film and distribution costs.

Viacom's net income rose to $420 million, or 69 cents per share, in the second quarter, from $277 million, or 46 cents per share, in the year ago period. Consolidated revenues for the quarter were flat at $3.3 billion as growth in affiliate, theatrical and advertising revenues offset lower home entertainment revenues. Analysts had expected earnings of 66 cents per share on $3.4 billion in revenue.

Revenue at media networks rose 6% to $2.09 billion from $1.97 billion, while revenue at filmed entertainment fell 10% to $1.25 billion from $1.38 billion.

"Viacom's strong bottom-line results reflect our focused strategy, our creative ingenuity and our disciplined financial approach. We are very pleased with our consistent progress and the solid results that Viacom continues to deliver for shareholders," said Executive Chairman Sumner Redstone.

"Viacom has significantly strengthened its financial position, driving free cash flow and continuing to expand our operating margins, culminating this quarter with the delivery of Viacom's first quarterly cash dividend," added President and CEO Philippe Dauman. "[W]e are well positioned to capitalize on improving trends in the advertising market. We have strong slates of new and returning programming debuting in the coming months on MTV, Nickelodeon, BET, Spike, Comedy Central and other networks, which we continue to deliver to audiences on multiple screens and devices."