Paul's Feed
Nov 4, 2009

Box office hits help lift Viacom profit 15 percent

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Viacom Inc’s quarterly profit rose 15 percent, breezing past expectations, as consumers set aside money worries to take in hit movies like “Transformers” and scoop up the new Beatles video game.

Cost-cutting also helped Viacom, the first of the major media conglomerates to report quarterly earnings. Signs that consumers were willing to open their wallets — and suggestions of a slight improvement in advertising sales — may bode well for Time Warner Inc and News Corp.

Nov 3, 2009

Box office hits help lift Viacom profit

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Viacom Inc’s quarterly profit rose 15 percent, breezing past expectations, as consumers set aside money worries to take in hit movies like “Transformers” and scoop up the new Beatles video game.

Cost-cutting also helped Viacom, the first of the major media conglomerates to report quarterly earnings. Signs that consumers were willing to open their wallets — and suggestions of a slight improvement in advertising sales — may bode well for Time Warner Inc and News Corp.

Nov 2, 2009

Big media stocks rally; will business follow?

NEW YORK, Oct 30 (Reuters) – When it comes to the media business, the script
reads that advertising will soon bounce back, a rush of deal making is around
the corner and a smart investor should scoop up cheap stocks straight away.

Certainly, anyone who bought shares of News Corp <NWSA.O> Time Warner Inc
<TWX.N> or Viacom Inc <VIAb.N> three months ago looks smart today: those stocks
have risen at least 35 percent. CBS Corp’s <CBS.N> shares have done even better,
doubling in the last three months.

Oct 29, 2009

Sprint loss widens, but fewer subscribers flee

NEW YORK, Oct 29 (Reuters) – Sprint Nextel Corp <S.N>
reported a wider quarterly loss and a revenue decline on
Thursday, and raised concerns that future results would be hurt
by its costly efforts to slow subscriber losses.

At the heart of Sprint’s struggles is the loss of postpaid
monthly-bill-paying subscribers, the most lucrative subscribers
in the mobile business. That dwindling subscriber base has put
Sprint further behind rivals Verizon Wireless and AT&T Inc
<T.N> in the wireless wars.

Oct 28, 2009

CBS digital chief stepping down; plans new firm

NEW YORK (Reuters) – CBS Corp on Wednesday announced the departure of the head of its digital business, Quincy Smith, who was brought on board by the media company three years ago to much fanfare.

Smith will start a new advisory business when he steps down as chief executive officer of CBS Interactive at the end of this year. CBS will become a client.

Oct 22, 2009

AT&T tops estimates as customers flock to wireless

CHICAGO/NEW YORK (Reuters) – AT&T Inc reported stronger-than-expected third-quarter profit as the glitzy iPhone and low budget Tracfone service attracted a record number of wireless customers.

While AT&T faces home phone disconnections and a drop in business spending that led it to forecast a small drop in 2009 revenue on Thursday, strength in mobile is offsetting much of the pain. Shares climbed 1.5 percent.

Oct 21, 2009

Omnicom profit drops 22 pct; awaits ad recovery

NEW YORK, Oct 21 (Reuters) – Omnicom Group Inc <OMC.N>
reported a 22 percent fall in third-quarter earnings as a big
drop in spending by key advertising clients, like Chrysler,
badly hurt revenue — and will likely do so again in the fourth
quarter.

Executives at Omnicom, home to a network of advertising and
media agencies including BBDO Worldwide and DDB Worldwide, did
offer a somewhat brighter assessment of 2010, however. While
spending remained depressed, it had at least stabilized and
should pick up slowly next year, they said.

Oct 15, 2009

Redstone sells more Viacom, CBS stock to pay off debt

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Sumner Redstone plans to sell more than $945 million of stock in CBS Corp and Viacom Inc, two media companies he controls, to pay off loans that threatened to unravel the media mogul’s empire.

Shares of both CBS and Viacom dropped initially after Redstone’s announcement on Wednesday that he would use proceeds from the sales to help satisfy debt incurred by his private theater chain, National Amusements Inc.

Oct 5, 2009

Conde Nast magazines shut as review bites

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Conde Nast will close four magazines — Modern Bride, Elegant Bride, Gourmet, and Cookie — following a review the publisher undertook to find ways to reduce costs and staff in the face of a slump in advertising.

The decision is among the clearest signs yet of severe cost cuts at the publishing house best known for magazines such as The New Yorker, Vanity Fair and Vogue. Those cuts follow a study from McKinsey & Co consultants who were brought in by management this summer.

Oct 5, 2009

In any NBC Universal deal, drama surrounds Zucker

NEW YORK (Reuters) – NBC Universal CEO Jeff Zucker could be about to get a new boss — and asked to explain a three-year run when his company expanded its cable business and won acclaim for its Olympic broadcasts, but failed to score a single breakout prime-time TV hit.

Zucker has much to lose in any NBC Universal deal by General Electric Co <GE.N>, which, according to sources, is talking to Comcast Corp <CMCSA.O> about selling a majority stake in the media company.