Cable Lifts Fox

Double-digit gains at Fox News, FX help drive quarter

Programmer 21st Century Fox reported a 6% rise in revenue and cash flow rose 12% in the fiscal third quarter, fueled by strong results at its cable and television networks.

Overall, Fox reported revenue of $7.23 billion in the quarter, compared to $6.84 billion in the piror year. Operating income before depreciation and amortization (OIBDA, a measure of cash flow) increased to $1.88 billion from $1.68 billion in the period.

Driving most of the growth was its cable networks.

In the cable unit, which includes Fox News Channel, FX, FS1 and others, revenue increased 10% to $3.9 billion and OIBDA rose 12% to $1.38 billion. Fox said higher affiliate fee revenue and a low-double-digit percentage increase in ad revenue drove the gains.   

In the television segment, which includes the Fox broadcast network, revenue rose 5% to $1.3 billion and OIBDA fell 11% to $125 million, impacted by higher sports programming costs.

At filmed entertainment, OIBDA rose 23% to $470 million while revenue fell 2.8% to $2.3 billion, affected by foreign exchange rates and lower worldwide home entertainment and production revenue.

“We delivered significant revenue and earnings growth in the quarter on the strength of gains in affiliate and advertising revenues across our domestic and international cable portfolios as well as at our television segment,” executive chairmen Rupert and Lachlan Murdoch said in a joint statement.