Multimedia earnings increase in 4th quarter

Fourth quarter earnings for Multimedia Inc. climbed 13% and revenue shot up 65% as the Greenville, S.C., company benefitted from its successful syndicated programming and the acquisition of Indiana cable system.

For the quarter, Multimedia earned $ 21.8 million (56 cents), compared to $ 19.2 million (51 cents) in the like period a year ago.

Revenue was $ 173.7 million, up from $ 167.4 million.

For the year, the company earned $ 99.9 million ($ 2.23), compared to $ 60.5 million in 1992. An accounting change related to income taxes and post-retirement benefits cut $ 14.3 million (37 cents) from 1993 earnings. Revenue was $ 634.6 million, up from $ 576.8 million.

Broadcasting revenue slipped in the quarter to $ 42.2 million from $ 44.9 million, largely because the year-ago period benefitted from political advertising. For the year, broadcasting revenue fell to $ 155.7 million from $ 160.5 million.

Cablevision revenue climbed during the quarter because of the company’s December 1992 acquisition of the 28,500-subscriber Indiana Cable Systems. For the quarter, cablevision revenues were $ 41.1 million, up from $ 37.9 million, and for the year the unit’s sales climbed to $ 164.6 million from $ 144.4 mil.

The entertainment segment’s revenues also climbed on the strength of two talkers –“Jerry Springer” and “Rush Limbaugh, the Television Show”– and an increased output of TV movies. Entertainment revenue increased to $ 47.9 million from $ 46.0 million in the quarter and to $ 161.6 million from $ 129.1 million for the year.

Multimedia also owns 61 newspapers and monitors about 52,000 home security alarm systems.

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