Earnings at CBS up in First Quarter

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CBS has posted first quarter earnings that are higher despite losing some revenue it earned in 2013 from March Madness and the Super Bowl.

Net earnings were up 6% reaching $468 million equal to 78 cents per share from last year’s $443 million equal to 69 cents per share.

Revenue however dropped by 5% to just over $3.86 billion. Revenues from last year included those from the Super Bowl in the amount of $280 million.

Leslie Moonves the CEO at CBS said the company’s core business and new opportunities monetized the company’s content, while it momentum continues increasing.

Moonves said the company was confident it remained in the early stages of its traffic period of growth.

Moonves added that as CBS continues to expand as a content company a dramatic step ahead was taken when the initial public offering for CBS Outdoor was successfully completed. CBS Outdoor was able to obtain a favorable REIT ruling from the Internal Revenue Service.

The separation of the business brings the company much closer to reaching its goal of being a pure content business.

Moonves ended by saying currently the company is on track to return shareholders value of about $6 billion.

The Entertainment division at CBS posted an operating income decline of 5%, ending the quarter at $457 billion. The business said the decline had reflected the absence of revenues from the Super Bowl, offset by profits being higher from program licensing.

Revenues from entertainment were off by 9% to end the quarter at $2.29 billion. As well as with the Super Bowl, revenues were hurt from the shift of March Madness, the NCAA Men’s National Basketball Tournament games over to Turner Broadcasting.

Those changes amounted to more than 11% of the declines in overall revenues for the sector. Distribution and content licensing were up by 6%.

Cable networks for CBS posted an increase of 12% in operating income ending the quarter at $231 million. The revenue for the networks was up by 12% to over $537 million. However, they experienced higher costs for programming as well.

Operating income from local broadcasting was 1% higher to more than $200 million.

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