WWE(R) Reports 2014 Second Quarter Results and Improved 2015 Business Outlook
STAMFORD, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--
WWE (WWE) today announced financial results for its second quarter ended June 30, 2014. For the quarter, the Company reported a Net loss of $14.5 million, or $0.19 per share, compared to Net income of $5.2 million, or $0.07 per share, in the second quarter last year. Excluding items affecting comparability, adjusted Net loss was $13.5 million, or $0.18 per share in the current year quarter, compared to Net income of $5.2 million, or $0.07 per share, in the second quarter last year. WWE Network reached 700,000 subscribers at quarter end.
"WWE's core business metrics remain strong, and WWE Network continues to be the single greatest opportunity to transform WWE's business model. During the quarter, we developed plans to make WWE Network available globally starting August 12, and completed a long-term content deal in Canada with Rogers Communications," stated Vince McMahon, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "Additionally, we identified efficiencies that will improve our 2015 OIBDA outlook by $30 million. Based on these initiatives, we are optimistic about our potential to drive long-term growth."
"As we expanded WWE Network to 700,000 subscribers, our earnings performance surpassed our guidance, which targeted a Net loss ranging from $15 million to $18 million. Our key metrics continued to show strength as average North American attendance increased 11%, representing the fourth consecutive quarter of year-over-year growth. Raw and SmackDown TV ratings increased 5% and 3%, respectively, marking SmackDown's 7th quarter of growth among the past 8 quarters," added George Barrios, Chief Strategy & Financial Officer. "We identified efficiencies across WWE, which include a 7% reduction in staff, and improved our 2015 OIBDA outlook by $30 million. We developed plans to make WWE Network available in over 170 countries, and entered a 10-year deal that provides for the WWE Network launch as a traditional a-la-carte Pay-TV channel in Canada and renews our television licensing agreement for Raw and SmackDown. The progress in our strategic initiatives reinforces our view that successful execution of our WWE Network strategy can generate meaningful economic returns."
WWE Network Update
The quarter was highlighted by the ongoing ramp up of WWE Network, which attracted gross additions of 161,000 subscribers since WrestleMania on April 6th and ended the quarter at 700,000 subscribers, reflecting a net addition of 33,000 subscribers. To drive ongoing subscriber growth, the Company continues to execute a five-part strategy that includes making the network available in new geographies, creating new content, expanding distribution platforms, developing new features and enhancing its marketing. Critical aspects of this strategy include making WWE Network available in international markets and completing a new partnership with Rogers Communications, which provides the rights to distribute the network in Canada.
* Customer Engagement: Viewer data indicates that, on average, 91% of subscribers access the network at least once per week and use 2.5 devices to consume network content. Moreover, consumer research indicates that 90% of subscribers are satisfied with WWE Network (with 51% extremely satisfied and 39% somewhat satisfied).
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