Turner Broadcasting earnings down 48% movie unit blamed


ATLANTA -- Turner Broadcasting System Inc. said yesterday that its second-quarter earnings fell 48 percent because of weak results at its Castle Rock Entertainment film unit.

Net income fell to $11.3 million, or 4 cents a share, from $21.7 million, or 8 cents, in the year-earlier period.

Revenue at the owner of Cable News Network rose 13 percent to $900 million from $798 million.

The Atlanta-based company said it had about $6 million of expenses in the quarter related to its proposed acquisition by Time Warner Inc. Time Warner in September agreed to buy the 82 percent of Turner it does not already own for $7.5 billion.

Turner said the poor domestic and international theatrical box office revenue resulted in write-offs of about $28 million.

Castle Rock, which released "Striptease" and "Lone Star" during the second quarter, said the films have generated gross box office revenue of about $36 million to date, said Kitsie Riggall, a Turner spokeswoman.

The company did not provide box office revenue for last year's second quarter.

Operating cash flow fell 9.2 percent to $118 million from $130 million. Operating cash flow, or earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, is often used as a financial measure for companies such as Turner with high debt.

For the latest six months, Turner said its net income fell to $1.46 million, or 1 cent a share, from $43.7 million, or 15 cents, in the year-ago period.

Revenue rose to $1.68 billion from $1.51 billion for the half year.

Operating cash flow fell to $192 million from $261 million.

Pub Date: 8/08/96

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