AT & Ts DirecTV now loses 83,000 subscribers, WarnerMedia Earnings Rise

Telecom giant reports its latest financial and subscriber numbers along with results at WarnerMedia.

Telecom giant AT & T, chaired by Chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson, reported on Wednesday higher financial quarters for its WarnerMedia unit through growth across all entities, saying it lost 83,000 subscribers to DirecTV Now streaming service in the period after a 267,000 fall in the fourth quarter.

DirecTV ended in 201[ads1]8 with 1.6 million subscribers and closed in March with 1.5 million. The company also lost 544,000 traditional pay-TV subscribers in the first quarter between DirecTV satellite TV and U-Verse services to complete March with 22.4 million total subscribers.

After 83,000 subscribers lost on DirecTV Now streaming service, Stephenson during a morning analyst call admitted that it would continue customer losses, but "we should have a decent second half of DirecTV Now."

Meanwhile, AT & Ts's entertainment unit WarnerMedia, led by CEO John Stankey, reported an 11.6 percent first-quarter operating profit improvement to $ 2.2 billion and 3.3 percent revenue growth to $ 8.4 billion. The company quoted "Turner subscription revenue growth, HBO digital subscriber growth continued as [the] last season by Game of Thrones begins, strong Warner Bros revenue and revenue growth."

Stephenson pointed out former NBC Entertainment chairman Robert Greenblatt has come aboard as a leader, WarnerMedia Entertainment and direct to consumer. His main priority is to develop a three-step direct-to-streaming streaming service to launch in the fall as it combines HBO, Turner and Warner Bros. library programming.

"We are very optimistic and the Disney announcement gave us more optimism about what we want to bring to the market," says Stephenson analysts, watching Walt Disney's recent Disney + streaming service, revealing a high content bar for WarnerMedia, Comcast and Apple are planning rival streaming services. [19659006] Warner Bros. Operating revenues jumped 42.8 percent thanks to a "strong performance in theatrical and television", including theatrical revenue, which grew 12.7 percent, driven by the continued contributions of Aquaman . TV product revenue increased by 7.7 percent due to "higher initial revenue, partly offset by lower license revenue."

Turner generated a 7.0 percent revenue growth as subscription revenue increased, but advertising revenue declined "mainly due to [the] shift of NCAA Final Four games." The unit's operating costs were down 4.1 percent "primarily due to lower programming costs that reflect the shift of the NCAA Final Four games and lower original programming and marketing expenses. "

And HBO's operating revenue rose 6.0 percent in the first quarter despite a car wash dispute dispute. Subscription revenue and subscribers were "adversely affected" by the dispute, but revenues were helped by "higher domestic prices and digital and international growth," the company said. HBO's operating costs fell 13.0 per cent due to lower programming and distribution expenses.

Formerly Stephenson in a statement that came with AT & T's latest achievements, mocked the telecom's overall growth strategy. "All this tells us the volume of our focus on our strategic priorities and our ability to increase our mobility, WarnerMedia and new Xandr [advanced advertising and analytics] businesses. Our teams perform well and have performed well to start the year."

AT&T added to paying off debt that has grown to $ 171 billion since acquiring Time Warner and renaming it. WarnerMedia was its major priority in 2019. Stephenson told analysts that telecoms still paid down $ 40 billion in debt taken to provide Time Warner with strong free cash flow and asset sales. It involves selling a stake in Hulu for $ 1.43 billion, as well as the $ 2.2 billion Hudson Yard office.

On Wednesday, AT&T said it would end in 2019 with around $ 150 billion in debt and that it was on track to pay down around 75 percent of the $ 40 billion debt behind the Time Warner acquisition by the end of the year.

Apr. 24, 9:30 am.m. Updated with comments from AT & T CEO Randall Stephenson made during an analyst conversation.

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