Comcast beats revenue estimates on boost from theme parks, studios

By Helen Coster and Samrhitha A

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Comcast Corp’s quarterly revenue beat estimates on Thursday, helped by higher theme park attendance and the successful theatrical releases of “The Super Mario Bros Movie” and “Fast X”, sending its shares up 3.5% in premarket trading.

The company’s total revenue rose 1.7% to $30.51 billion in the quarter, beating analysts’ average estimate of $30.13 billion, according to Refinitiv data.

In its second set of results under a new reporting structure that includes NBCUniversal in the content and experiences segment, the company reported a 4% increase in revenue in the unit to $10.87 billion in the second quarter.

Ad revenue in content and experiences fell 4.9% from the same quarter a year prior, in a weak but stable advertising environment.

Revenue at the company’s Peacock streaming service rose 84.7% compared with a year earlier. Paid subscribers increased by two million in the second quarter, to 24 million, from the 22 million it reported in the previous quarter.

Adjusted losses from the platform widened to $651 million from $467 million a year ago as Comcast continues to invest heavily in content. The company has said that it expects Peacock losses to peak at around $3 billion in 2023, but expects it to steadily improve after that.

Theme parks revenue climbed 22.4%, thanks to demand for attractions such as “Super Nintendo World” in Hollywood and Osaka, Japan.

Comcast’s total connectivity and platforms revenue, which includes the cable business and most of its Sky unit, reported a 0.1% gain in revenue.

Comcast lost 19,000 broadband customers in the quarter, while Factset had estimated a loss of 73,000 customers.

Competition from wireless carriers such as T-Mobile US Inc and Verizon Communications Inc has pressured Comcast’s business, which has also been hurt by high market penetration and low moving rates.

Overall, net income attributable to Comcast rose 25.1% to $4.25 billion in the quarter.

Excluding items, the company earned $1.13 cents per share.

(Reporting by Helen Coster, editing by Deepa Babington)

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