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MGM Sees Strong Revenue Gains Due to TV Content

MGM Holdings has reported a strong 42% third-quarter revenue hike to $380.2 million, thanks to higher television revenues.

In a filling Thursday on its investor relations website, privately held MGM also disclosed that its earnings slid to $25.3 million from $114.2 million in the year-ago quarter and adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) declined to $34.5 million from $90.8 million, which the company said was due to higher expenses-related investment spending on growth initiatives, including increased programming costs for its Epix channel, higher marketing expenses for Epix, expanded theatrical distribution, and higher overhead due to the acquisitions of Epix, Evolution, and Big Fish.

The third quarter included “unanticipated film impairment charges” totaling $19.7 million. MGM did not identify which title was the source of the charges. It also said this was partially offset by $32 million of higher adjusted EBITDA from “robust” licensing activity for “Vikings,” as well as deliveries of new episodes of “Vikings” (Season 6) and “The Handmaid’s Tale” (Season 2).

“We also continued to deliver a high volume of unscripted shows, including our new show for CBS, ‘TKO: Total Knock Out,’ plus new episodes of ‘Live PD’ from our strategic acquisition of Big Fish in June 2018, ‘The Real Housewives of Orange County’ (Season 13), ‘Survivor’ (Season 37), ‘Botched’ (Season 5), ‘The Voice’ (Season 15), and many other shows,” MGM said.

MGM’s last release, “Operation Finale,” launched to $17 million domestically in August. The studio teamed with Warner Bros. on “Creed 2,” which opens on Nov. 21.

MGM’s most recent third quarter worldwide theatrical revenue for film content was $5.3 million, up $2.4 million from last year. TV licensing revenue for film content was $110.2 million for the three-month period, rising $23.3 million from last year. Home entertainment revenue was $21.8 million, an increase of $4.9 million during the same three-month period a year ago.

MGM is handling domestic distribution on the new James Bond movie. Cary Joji Fukunaga will direct the 25th James Bond installment, replacing Danny Boyle, who exited the pic over creative differences with producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson, and returning star Daniel Craig. Fukunaga will be the Bond franchise’s first American director.

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