Time Warner reported higher fourth quarter earnings even as revenue remained virtually unchanged.
Net income was $1.2 billion, or $1.21 a share, up from $773 million, or 78 cents a share, a year ago.
Fourth quarter revenues were flat at $8.2 billion
Adjusted earnings per share were $1.17 per share, higher than forecast by Wall Street analysts. Analysts were expecting higher revenue for the quarter
The company’s networks division had higher profits, with ad and affiliate revenue increasing.
For 2013, the company said it expected adjusted earnings per share growthto be in the low double digit range, taking into account $60 million in restructuring charges at its Time Inc. magazine division.
Time Warner also said that it increased its cash dividend by 11%, paying $1.15 a share quarterly, up from $1.04 a share.
Summing up the year, CEO Jeff Bewkes noted that Time Warners’s Networks and Film and TV Entertainment segments achieved record profits. “At the same time, we continued to expand our TV Everywhere offerings at Turner and HBO, put the full weight of Warner Bros. behind the UltraViolet home entertainment industry standard for storing digital movies in the cloud and launched digital subscriptions for Time Inc.’s domestic magazines on all major tablet platforms.”
Time Warner’s networks division, which includes Turner Broadcasting and HBO, reported that adjusted operating income rose 17% to $1.3 billion because if increased revenue and lower expenses, including lower programming expenses.
Revenues increased 5% to $3.7 billion. Ad revenues rose 3% and subscription revenues improved 7%. Content revenues were down 9%.
Time Warner said it bought 80.4 million of its shares for $3.3 billion in 2012, including 24 million shares for $1.1 billion since Nov. 7. The company’s board has authorized a new $4 billion stock repurchase program, beginning Jan. 1