Corus hits high note with strong ad revs

Net earnings for the quarter were up 18% to $6 mil

MONTREAL — Canuck broadcast company Corus Entertainment posted strong results for its second quarter Thursday thanks to advertising revenue growth from its specialty channels and good sales from consumer products, particularly from its “Beyblade” merchandise.

For the quarter ended Feb. 29, Toronto-based Corus generated revenues of C$155 million ($114 million), up 5% from $109 million in the same period a year earlier. Net earnings for the quarter were up 18% to $6 million, compared with $5 million a year earlier.

Corus Television saw revenues of $55 million, up 5% from $53 million the previous year. Advertising revenue grew by 5% and subscriber revenue grew by 6%. Pay TV network Movie Central finished the quarter with 699,000 subscribers, up 6% from Aug. 31.

Corus’ content division had revenues of $25 million, an 18% increase from $21 million a year earlier. Most of that was thanks to the consumer products division, which showed growth of 88% from the year before due to the strong performance of “Beyblade” products worldwide. Production and distribution revs declined from $14 million last year to $11 million as a result of a reduced production slate at Nelvana and the timing of productions.

Six-month revenues for Corus increased to $250 million, up 8% from $231 million in the first six months of last year. Net earnings for the year-to-date were $10 million, down from $11 million a year earlier. Television revs for the first six months were $125 million, an 8% increase from the year before.

Corus’ TV holdings including a number of specialty channels, notably YTV, Treehouse TV, W Network and an 80% stake in CMT (Country Music Television) and a 40% interest in Teletoon.

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