Comcast began 2022 on a strong note, reporting first-quarter results ahead of Wall Street expectations with highlights including ad revenue from Super Bowl LVI and the Beijing Olympics.
Total revenue climbed 14% from the year-earlier period to $31.01 billion, while earnings per share came in at 86 cents, up 13%.
Wall Street analysts’ consensus estimates were for earnings of 80 cents a share and revenue of $30.5 billion.
NBCUniversal had a powerful quarter, with revenue jumping 47% to $10.3 billion. That tally included $1.5 billion of incremental revenue from the Beijing Olympics and the Super Bowl, both in February. The Games brought in $963 million, while the Super Bowl drew $519 million. Excluding that windfall, media revenue still went up 7%.
Universal Pictures also had a strong quarter, with Sing 2 and licensing activity driving a 15% increase in revenue to $2.8 billion. Comparisons were favorable, as theaters were largely still closed in the first quarter of 2021. Theme parks followed a similar trajectory, coming back to life after a dormant first quarter a year ago.
In the cable division, Comcast shed another 512,000 video customers to reach 17.7 million by the end of the quarter. Results still climbed on the top and bottom line thanks to ongoing strength in broadband and a net increase in customer relationships.
Sky revenue for Sky dipped 4.5% to $4.8 billion, and excluding the impact of
currency, revenue was flat with a year earlier. Comcast cited lower content revenue, higher ad revenue, and consistent direct-to-consumer revenue.
Adjusted EBITDA for Sky shot up 71% to $622 million in the quarter, thanks to resets in sports rights in Italy and Germany.
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