Liberty Media posts loss, but revs go up

QVC purchase surges sales

NEW YORK — Liberty Media said Monday it swung to the red last quarter on losses from some investments, but John Malone’s complex group — part financial, part operating company — offered some upbeat news by upping its full-year forecasts for QVC and Discovery.

Liberty lost $10 million in the first three months vs. a profit of $132 million the year before. Revenue surged to $2.37 billion from $505 million as the group folded in home shopping giant QVC, which it purchased from Comcast last year. Liberty also included large pan-European cabler UnitedGlobalCom in its consolidated results for the first time.

At Discovery Communications, revenue rose 23% to $527 million. Operating income jumped to $78 million from $37 million.

Liberty owns 50% of Discovery, which includes Discovery Channel. TLC, Animal Planet, Travel Channel, Discovery Health Channel, Discovery Kids and a handful of other nets in the U.S. and overseas.

Liberty now sees revenue at the unit rising in the high teens and operating income up about 30%.

QVC grew revenue by 21% to nearly $1.3 billion. Operating income eased to $153 million from $180 million. For the full year, Liberty now anticipates revenue up in the low to mid-teens and a mid-teen dip in operating income.

At 100%-owned Starz Encore Group, revenue rose a hair to $232 million from $229 million. As expected, operating income plunged, to $53 million from $90 million on higher operating expenses — mainly increased programming license fees and affiliate marketing support.

Starz was hit earlier this year when Comcast refused pay the cushy fees that AT&T Broadband had forked out for Starz programming. Comcast acquired AT&T last year and threatened to take Liberty to court on the fees issue. Liberty backed down and is now getting market rates.

Starz’s full-year outlook is unchanged with revenue of $940 million-$965 million and operating income of $125 million-$150 million.

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Biz News from Variety