Shaw, Corus post year-to-year gains

Co. aided by $92 mil after-tax gain of interest sales

MONTREAL — Shaw Communications, Canada’s second-largest cable company, and Corus Entertainment, a broadcast company spun off from Shaw last year, posted strong financial results for the past year.

Annual rev for Corus, created as a separate publicly traded company by Shaw in September 1999, increased from C$159.6 million ($105 million) to $151 million this year, with net earnings soaring from $3.9 million to $103 million. The earnings were aided by an after-tax gain of approximately $92 million from the sale of the company’s interests in Headline Sports Television Network, Liberty Digital and CTV.

Corus owns Canuck youth webs YTV and Treehouse TV, and has an 80% stake in Country Music Television. It also owns and operates 43 radi stations in British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario and Quebec.

Over the past year, it has inked a number of key deals designed to up the company’s profile. In September, it agreed to pay out $355 million to acquire Nelvana, Canada’s leading animation producer, and Corus and Balmur Entertainment announced the creation of a Balmur Corus Music to pursue country-music opportunities in the U.S. and Canada. In July, the federal Canadian-Radio Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) gave the greenlight to Corus to acquire the radio and specialty TV assets of WIC. This summer, the CRTC also gave its approval to the application for the Food Network, an Alliance Atlantis-controlled channel in which Corus has a 19.9% stake.

Shaw of Calgary reported net earnings of $78 1million on revenue of $639 million for the year ended Aug. 31, compared with net earnings of $31 million on revenue of $467 million a year earlier.

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