Lionsgate has reported earnings of $62 million, or 30 cents a share, for its fourth quarter ended March 31 — topping Wall Street forecasts of 22 cents a share and far above year-ago earnings of $10.9 million.
Revenues also came in above expectations at $1.26 billion, while analysts had been forecasting $1.19 billion.
Lionsgate announced the earnings Thursday after the market closed. Shares of the Class A stock rose gained 45 cents to $26 in afterhours trading.
It’s the second earnings report for the studio since its Dec. 8 acquisition of Starz for $4.4 billion. That transaction generated $89 million in restructuring and other costs primarily associated with the acquisition and subsequent integration of Starz.
Lionsgate’s movie operations have been buoyed by its musical comedy-drama “La La Land,” which won six Academy Awards and grossed $443 million in worldwide box office. The whimsical comedy-drama carried a production cost of $30 million.
“We’re pleased to report our first full quarter of financial results since we brought Starz into the Lionsgate family, and the numbers reflect a great finish to a strong year,” said Lionsgate chief executive officer Jon Feltheimer. “Our film slate ended fiscal 2017 with an impressive box office run, our Television Group turned in another standout performance and Starz had a great year. We couldn’t be more pleased with how successfully we’re integrating them into our operations and, working together, unlocking fresh opportunities.”
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The media networks segment reported revenues edged up to $370.8 million from $365.6 million and profits increased 10.7% to $124.8 million, thanks to expense controls and the licensing of “Black Sails.” Profit margins improved in the quarter to 33.7% from 30.8%.
Motion picture segment revenues increased 7.3% to $654 million, driven by “La La Land,” “John Wick: Chapter Two” and “The Shack.” Segment profit jumped to $52 million from $2.5 million as higher revenue more than offset operating expenses and marketing spend.
The studio did not mention “Power Rangers” in its announcement, which opened March 24 and grossed $140 million worldwide on a $100 million budget.
Television production segment revenues were $242.6 million while segment profit decreased to $13 million from a record $42.1 million last year — which was driven by international delivery of four seasons of “Orange Is the New Black.” Segment profit margins declined from 16.7% to 5.4%.