Indie studio Lionsgate beat Wall Street expectations with its first-quarter financials, reporting gains in its media networks and television production divisions.
The studio said Q1 revenues were $932.7 million, down from the year-ago period. It recorded a loss of $7.9 million.
“We’re pleased to report a strong quarter with continued robust free cash flow and solid contributions from all of our businesses,” said CEO Jon Feltheimer. “Our global content machine is operating at full throttle, and we continue to invest in a programming and international rollout strategy at Starz that is working. Our initiatives in the quarter continued to strengthen Lionsgate’s stature as a unique and essential part of the media ecosystem.”
The company noted that Starz saw a subscriber gain in the period of 300,000, reaching 23.8 million, with increases in both MVPD and OTT customers. Overall media networks revenues were up 3 percent to $354.9 million, led by OTT revenue growth. Segment profits were flat as a result of the costs of Starz’s international expansion and moderate marketing spend increases in the U.S. Announcing its financials, the company said that STARZPLAY branded channels are set to launch in France, Italy and Spain following previous rollouts in the U.K. and Germany.
In the motion pictures segment, revenues fell by 23 percent—the year-ago period included significant home-entertainment revenues for John Wick: Chapter 2 and the international revenues of La La Land. Motion picture profits fell 41 percent to $51.6 million, largely as a result of higher theatrical marketing expenses.
Television production revenues were up 7 percent to $279.4 million, boosted by gains in domestic license fees and international revenue. Segment profits decreased by 64 percent to $15.6 million in the fiscal quarter.