Paramount Global saw a third-quarter profit hike thanks to new revenue from its streaming and film operations even as its largest business, linear TV, grappled with flat distribution revenue and a downturn in advertising dollars.
The New York owner of CBS, the Paramount movie studio and the Nickelodeon cable network said revenue rose 3% during the period, largely due to a 38% increase in its streaming business and a 14% hike from its film division, which benefitted from the latest releases in the “Mission Impossible” and “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” franchises. Revenue fell 8%, thanks in part to distribution fees that were essentially flat with the year-earlier period and a 14% decline in traditional video advertising.
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In a statement, Paramount CEO Bob Bakish tried to spotlight the company’s efforts in streaming. “We continue to execute our strategy and prioritize prudent investment in streaming while maximizing the earnings of our traditional business,” he said, citing narrower losses at Paramount+, with new subscribers. Paramount expects “DTC losses in 2023 will be lower than in 2022 — meaning
streaming investment peaked ahead of plan. Looking ahead, we remain on the path to
achieving significant total company earnings growth in 2024.”
During a call with investors Thursday, Paramount executives emphasized their efforts to boost streaming activity, and assured stockholders that investment in streaming would be less in 2024 than it was in 2023.
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