Comcast Earnings: ‘The Voice,’ ‘Fast and Furious’ Bolster 2Q Results

NBC operations see uptick in ad revenue

Comcast Brian Roberts

Comcast Corp. said performance at its NBCUniversal unit, which featured “The Voice” on broadcast TV and the latest in the “Fast and the Furious” series in movie theaters, helped boost net income and revenue rose in its second quarter, along with robust performance at its cable operations, where it said sales of high-speed Internet service were brisk.

Comcast said revenue for the second quarter of 2013 increased 7% to $16.3 billion, up from $15.2 billion in the year-earlier period, while net income came to about $1.73 billion, or $.65 per share, compared with the $1.35 billion, or $0.50 per share reported in the second quarter of 2012.

At the company’s cable operations, revenue increased 5.8% to $10.5 billion in the second quarter of 2013, compared to $9.9 billion in the year-earlier period.

Comcast cited increases of 8% in high-speed Internet, 26.4% in business services and 2.7% in video. The company said the increase in revenue reflected rate adjustments, customers receiving higher levels of services and customer growth.

The company said combined video, high-speed Internet and voice customers increased by 189,000 in the second quarter of 2013, a 36.8% increase in net additions compared with the year-earlier period, reflecting growth in high-speed Internet and voice customers and reduced losses in video customers.

At NBCU, revenue increased 8.9% to $6.0 billion in the second quarter, compared to $5.5 billion in the second quarter of 2012.

Revenue at the unit’s cable networks  increased 7.7% to $2.4 billion, compared to $2.2 billion in the second quarter of 2012, reflecting a new content licensing agreement, a 4.4% increase in distribution revenue and a 5.7% increase in advertising revenue.

Revenue at the unit’s broadcast segment  increased 11.6% to $1.7 billion, compared to $1.6 billion a year earlier, driven by a 13% increase in advertising revenue, primarily reflecting higher primetime ratings at the NBC broadcast network, and higher retransmission consent fees, partially offset by lower content licensing revenue.

Revenue at NBCU’s film division increased 12.8% to $1.4 billion compared to $1.2 billion in the second quarter of 2012. Comcast cited higher theatrical revenue from the strong box office performance of “Fast and Furious 6.”