Peacock, NBCUniversal’s fledgling streaming service, was — unsurprisingly — drenched in red ink last year.
Peacock had a $914 million adjusted loss for 2020, according to a Comcast filing with the SEC Monday. The streamer contributed $118 million in revenue to NBCU. In addition, Comcast recorded $989 million in “eliminations” for Peacock last year, which are intracompany payments charged against revenue and operating earnings for a given division (e.g. content licensed to Peacock from other NBCU units).
Comcast said Peacock had 33 million signups in the U.S. at year-end but hasn’t provided metrics on how many of those are paying subscribers. The service, available in free and premium subscription tiers, launched for Comcast cable subscribers last April and went nationwide in July 2020.
Comcast disclosed the financial metrics for Peacock in an 8-K filing as part of a change in how the company will report NBCU segment operating results.
Starting with the first quarter of 2021, the operations of Peacock — which Comcast previously reported in its “corporate and other” line item — will now be included in NBCU results. The results for NBCUniversal will be presented in three business segments: Media (cable and broadcast networks, TV stations, and Peacock), Studios (film and TV studio production and distribution) and Theme Parks (the Universal theme parks).
The revision in how Comcast reports NBCU results is intended to reflect the reorganization of its television and streaming businesses to “a centralized structure optimizing content creation, distribution and monetization,” Comcast said in the filing.
Comcast execs previously told investors that it expected to invest upwards of $2 billion in Peacock during 2020 and 2021. The company has projected Peacock will achieve the break-even point by 2025.
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