News Corp Sees Profits Jump
News Corp reported a big jump in net income during its first quarter, led by gains in its television and newspaper operations, as advertisers who had slashed their spending a year ago returned to the field. The media conglomerate reported net income of $775 million, up 36 percent from $571 million during the comparable quarter a year ago. Particularly strong were Fox's cable channels, whose revenue rose 17 percent to $659 million from $514 million a year ago. In a statement, News Corp chief Rupert Murdoch said, "With continued subscriber growth in new and established channels throughout the world, and a global advertising recovery, our domestic and international channels now account for 25 percent of our revenues, and uniquely position us for profitable expansion of these franchises in the years to come." News Corp COO Chase Carey added that the company intends to push for higher retransmission-consent fees when signing new deals with cable companies as it had with Cablevision last month. "Over the next couple of years as we continue to close new agreements we will be taking this business to a whole new level of profitability," he said. News Corp's other television operations produced mixed results. While gains by its owned TV stations jumped 57 percent to $105 million from $67 million a year ago, returns from its Fox Broadcasting group dropped as a result of higher expenses for program cancellations and higher marketing costs. Meanwhile, Cablevision today (Thursday) also reported solid results for its third quarter. Earnings, it said, rose 13 percent versus the same quarter a year ago.