Time Warner Earnings Dip Despite TV Gains

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Despite higher revenues from its TV business, Time Warner posted lower first-quarter profits because of lower earnings at its movie unit.

Net income totaled $653 million, or 59 cents a share, down 10 % from $725 million or 62 cents per share.

Revenues rose 6% to $6.7 billion, with advertising revenues ahead 20%, driven by a 31% increase at Turner Broadcasting, which along with CBS, televised the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championship for the first time under a 14-year, $10.8 billion deal.

"We're on track to meet our financial goals for 2011 and making a lot of progress toward our longer-term objectives," Jeff Bewkes, CEO, said in a statement. ""We are also very excited about the progress we are making across the company in introducing and expanding our digital offerings to allow consumers to enjoy our content sooner and on

more platforms and devices than ever before."

Adjusted operating income at Time Warner's networks unit, which includes Turner and HBO, rose 2% to $1.17 billion from $1.14 billion as programming costs escalated 37% due to the NCAA basketball tournament rights, as well as higher increase costs for original and licensed programming. Revenues rose 18% to $3.496 billion from $2.958 billion. Advertising revenue rose 31%, thanks to March Madness and higher sales of HBO programming.

The company said it repurchased 37 million shares for $1.3 billion this year.

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