Driven by a strong performance in the cable TV segment — including Fox News and FX — 21st Century Fox today unveiled a healthy earnings report for its July-through-September fiscal first quarter.
“The company posted healthy results despite negative publicity during the period stemming from the sexual harassment scandal involving Roger Ailes at its Fox News division,” The Los Angeles Times reports. “Ailes, who was the cable news channel’s longtime chairman, stepped down in July after anchor Gretchen Carlson accused him of professional retaliation after she spurned his sexual advances.”
“21st Century Fox posted fiscal first-quarter earnings of 44 cents per share, or $827 million, up from 34 cents, or $678 million, in the same period last year,” The Times reports. “Revenue rose 7% to $6.51 billion, from $6.08 billion in the year-ago period.”
Helping to pump up the results were increases in affiliate and advertising revenues at the cable channels, especially FNC.
James Murdoch, CEO of 21st Century Fox, said during the earnings call that Fox News “is as strong as it has ever been.” The Times notes that Murdoch “alluded indirectly to the Ailes resignation, saying that the leadership change is ‘nothing that would change the trajectory or course’ of the channel.”
The report adds: “Revenue at the company’s cable TV business rose to $3.81 billion for the quarter from $3.46 billion a year earlier. Its television division saw revenue dip slightly to $1.04 billion from $1.05 billion.”