Viacom's Profit, Revenue Beat Estimates


Viacom Inc (NASDAQ:VIAB), the owner of MTV, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon, reported quarterly profit and revenue that handily beat estimates, helped in part by the success of its latest movie "xXx: The Return of Xander Cage".

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Revenue from Viacom's film business jumped 37 percent to $895 million in the company's second quarter ended March 31. Analysts on average had expected the business to generate revenue of $676.5 million, according to financial data and analytics firm FactSet.

Viacom said action thriller "xXx: Return of Xander Cage", starring Vin Diesel, grossed more than $346 million at the worldwide box office.

The media company in February said it would focus on six of its brands as part of a turnaround plan orchestrated by Chief Executive Bob Bakish. The brands are: Paramount, BET, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon and Nick Jr.

Additionally, Bakish has said he is focused on improving relations with Viacom's affiliates, and licensing less content to video streaming companies like Netflix and Hulu.

Net profit attributable to Viacom fell to $121 million, or 30 cents per share, in the company's second quarter, from $303 million, or 76 cents per share, a year earlier.

The company took a $174 million charge related to restructuring in the second quarter.

Excluding items, Viacom earned 79 cents per share, beating analysts' average estimate of 59 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Viacom's revenue rose 8.5 percent to $3.26 billion. Analysts had expected $3.02 billion.

Shares of the company were up slightly in light premarket trading.

(Reporting by Rishika Sadam and Anya George Tharakan in Bengaluru; Editing by Sai Sachin Ravikumar)

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