“We achieved these results while continuing to invest in broadband, our 10G network evolution, Xfinity Mobile, Peacock, and theme parks, and we also took cost actions to further our growth in the future,” said CEO Brian Roberts.
Comcast Corp. (CMCSA) – Get Free Report posted better-than-expected fourth quarter earnings Thursday, while boosting its dividend for a fifteenth consecutive year, as solid ad sales and theme parks revenues offset customer losses in its broadband division.
Comcast said adjusted profits for the three months ending in December were pegged at 82 cents per share, up 6.5% from the same period last year but 5 cents ahead of the Street consensus forecast. Group revenues, Comcast said, edged 0.6% higher to $30.522 billion, again beating analysts’ estimates of a $30.32 billion tally.
Comcast said it lost a net 26,000 broadband subscribers over the three-month period, compared to a gain of 14,000 in the third quarter, although that figure was impacted by losses linked to Hurricane Ian, which devastated southwest Florida in late September.
Cable revenues were up 1.4% to $16.64 billion, Comcast said, and the group added a net new 5 million subscribers to its Peacock streaming service, taking its overall total past 20 million. Ad sales at NBCU were up 4% to $2.86 billion, Comcast said, while theme park revenues rose 12% to $2.11 billion despite Covid-linked closures in China.
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“We delivered impressive revenue growth in broadband; grew wireless lines by 1.3 million, our best result since launch; more than doubled our Peacock subscribers, surpassing 20 million at year-end; nearly tripled Peacock revenue to $2.1 billion; ranked second in worldwide box office; and generated record adjusted earnings at our theme parks,” said CEO Brian Roberst. “Importantly, we achieved these results while continuing to invest in broadband, our 10G network evolution, Xfinity Mobile, Peacock, and theme parks, and we also took cost actions to further our growth in the future.”
“We are excited to begin the new year as an innovative leader in large profitable markets with a strong balance sheet and a strategy to drive incremental returns and bring outstanding content and experiences to our customers,” he added. “The Board’s confidence in our position and path forward is underscored by today’s announcement that we are increasing our dividend for the 15th consecutive year.”
Comcast shares were marked 1.5% higher in pre-market trading immediately following the earnings release to indicate an opening bell price of $40.69 each.