NEW YORK (AP) — Viacom's net income for the first quarter jumped 16 percent as lower costs at its film division more than offset a steep drop in revenue there.
The New York company, which owns Nickelodeon, MTV, Comedy Central and Paramount Pictures, got strong results from its TV networks with revenue in that division jumping 6 percent to $2.54 billion. That was driven by higher affiliate fees and advertising revenue.
Viacom President and CEO Philippe Dauman said that Nickelodeon regained the top spot among kids aged two to 11 during the quarter, boosted by new shows as well as standbys like "SpongeBob SquarePants" and "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles."
Film revenue tumbled 30 percent to $681 million, however, with fewer new movies compared to last year. There was a 52 percent slide in theatrical revenue and a 37 percent drop in home-entertainment revenue.
At the same time, because there were fewer films, operating losses also shrunk. Total expenses dropped 11 percent to $2.24 billion.