Netflix (NFLX) said it boosted profit by 26% in the third-quarter. The largest U.S. DVD-by-mail service gained new subscribers by expanding its digital and packaged-media offerings.
Shares rose in extended trading after the company beat earnings estimates and increased its annual revenue and earnings forecast as well as its fourth-quarter sales estimates.
Net income was $38 million, or 70 cents a share, up from $30.1 million, or 52 cents, a year earlier, as revenue increased 31% to $553.2 million, Netflix said in a statement Wednesday. Excluding certain items, the company, which expanded its customer base 52% from a year earlier to 16.9 million subscribers, earned 78 cents a share, more than the 72-cent average analyst estimate in a Thomson Reuters poll.
"Our rate of subscriber growth continues to accelerate and we added more than a million net new subscribers for the third consecutive quarter," said Netflix CEO Reed Hastings in the statement.
Netflix has been boosting revenue and pulling market share from companies such as video-store chain operator Blockbuster with its combination of by-mail DVD delivery and video streaming services in the U.S. Blockbuster last month filed Chapter 11 as part of a plan to slash the company's debt from almost $1 billion to an estimated $100 million.
With the sales increase, Netflix today boosted the low end of its 2010 revenue forecast by $10 million to $2.15 billion and forecast an earnings range with a midpoint of $2.76 a share, up from its July forecast midpoint of $2.72 a share.
Additionally, the company boosted its fourth-quarter revenue forecast to as much as $598 million from as much as $596 million.
Netflix shares increased 7.4% to $164.65 as of 4:35 Eastern time in extended trading Wednesday. The stock price has tripled this year.