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Lionsgate Posts Q4 Profit of $46 Million

31 May, 2011 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Mini-major credits digital, VOD, Epix for turnaround

Lionsgate May 31 reported fourth-quarter (ended March 31) net income of $46.1 million, compared with a loss of $22.3 million during the same period a year ago.

Santa Monica, Calif.-based Liongate cited lower theatrical P&A expenses, record digital revenue, a strong cable video-on-demand (VOD) performance and related international sales, in addition to a significant increase in equity interest income from pay-TV platform Epix for the quarterly income.

“Strong performances from our television business and our filmed entertainment library contributed to financial results that exceeded our preliminary estimates,” said Lionsgate co-chairman and CEO Jon Feltheimer, in a statement. “We were particularly pleased by near record international sales, reflecting the demand for content in the world marketplace, and rapid growth of high margin digital and on demand revenue.”

For the fiscal year, Lionsgate posted a loss of $53.6 million on revenue of $1.58 billion, compared with a loss of $19.5 million and revenue of $1.48 billion during the previous fiscal year.

Lionsgate said its filmed entertainment library generated record revenue of $329 million in fiscal 2011, compared with $323 million in the prior year. Library revenue topped $374 million, including syndicated TV product, compared with $371 million the prior year.

Home entertainment revenue from both motion pictures and television was $690 million in the fiscal year, a 5% increase from the prior year, driven by strong growth in digital and on demand revenue and strong performances from a diversified slate of theatrical titles including The Expendables, Kick-Ass, Killers, The Next Three Days, Saw 3D and The Switch as well as carryover titles from the prior year's theatrical slate such as Precious, Daybreakers and From Paris with Love.

Television series “Weeds” and “Mad Men” also contributed significantly.

Lionsgate said home entertainment revenue included digital and transactional VOD revenue of $140 million, up 69% from revenue of $96.6 million last year.

The studio’s executive will discuss the results in a June 1 conference call.

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