D2C, Ad Revenues Lift WarnerMedia Results


Higher direct-to-consumer and ad revenues helped to raise WarnerMedia’s first-quarter revenues by almost 10 percent to $8.5 billion.

WarnerMedia’s improved Q1 2021 results included an 18.5 percent gain in ad revenues to $1.8 billion. Direct-to-consumer revenues rose about 35 percent to $1.8 billion. Overall subscription revenues were up 12.6 percent to $3.8 billion. Content revenues were $3.4 billion, up 3.5 percent due to higher sales to HBO Max for theatrical product and higher basic networks licensing, partly offset by lower television product licensing.

The business has 63.9 million global subscribers for HBO and HBO Max, of which 44.2 million are in the U.S., up from 41.5 million at the end of Q4. HBO Max is gearing up for its global expansion, with plans to reach 60 international markets by year-end. In addition, the platform is launching an AVOD tier this summer.

Parent company AT&T reported Q1 revenues of $43.9 billion, a 2.7 percent increase, with net income rising to $7.5 billion. “We continued to excel in growing customer relationships in our market focus areas of mobility, fiber and HBO Max,” said John Stankey, AT&T’s CEO. “We had another strong quarter of postpaid phone net adds, higher gross adds, lower churn and good growth in mobility EBITDA. We also continue to increase penetration in markets where we offer fiber broadband and we’re moving quickly to deploy more fiber. HBO Max continued to deliver strong subscriber and revenue growth in advance of our international and AVOD launches planned for June.”