9:34 AM, Nov 16, 2018 — Viacom (VIA, VIAB) reported earnings and revenue that both topped expectations after its Paramount Pictures business jumped on the backs of Mission: Impossible – Fallout, A Quiet Place and Book Club.
The film and television company said fiscal fourth-quarter adjusted earnings came in at $0.99 per share, up from $0.77 in the same period a year ago and ahead of estimates compile by Capital IQ of $0.95. For the quarter ended Sept. 30, revenue was reported at $3.49 billion, up from $3.32 billion in the same period a year ago, topping the Street projection of $3.37 billion.
Paramount Pictures recorded a $241 million improvement in operating income and the company said the studio is now on track for full-year profitability next year.
Mission: Impossible – Fallout was the top earning film globally in the fourth quarter, becoming the most-successful movie in the franchise. So far, it’s taken in $800 million to date.
Horror film A Quiet Place grossed more than $340 million worldwide, becoming the second-highest grossing horror film in the US over the past decade, with a production costs of only $20 million, Viacom said. Book Club, a comedy, grossed almost $75 million after being acquired for only $10 million.
“Paramount Pictures has built a diverse theatrical film slate of 13 titles for FY19 — up from nine in fiscal 2018 — that feature big-budget tentpoles, targeted-audience productions and Viacom-branded films,” the company said. Bumblebee, the latest installment of the Transformers franchise, the BET-co-branded film What Men Want, a reboot of Stephen King’s Pet Sematary and the Elton John biopic are all slated for release.
Bob Bakish, Viacom’s chief executive, said the company’s strong performance was “pivotal” for the company.
“We successfully turned around our core business, with dramatic improvements across our networks, at Paramount and in distribution,” he said. “We also took important steps to evolve Viacom for the future — investing in our portfolio of advanced marketing solutions, digital and experiential offerings and global studio production business. As we head into 2019, we are excited about the company’s evolution and expect to return to topline growth.”
Companies: Viacom Inc.
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