NDS sale assists News Corp

November 7, 2012 08.21 Europe/London By Julian Clover

Gains on the sale of News Corp’s remaining interest in NDS and the growth of its channels business was enough to compensate for declines in publishing and satellite operations.

The 49% investment in NDS, sold to Cisco in July, netted News Corp a gain of $1.4 billion.

News Corp’s cable network programming segment delivered growth of 16%. Fox International Channels benefitted from local currency growth.

The company reported revenue for the three months ending September 30, 2012 of $8.14 billion, a $177 million, a 2% increase on the equivalent quarter in 2011.

“Our operational discipline and focus on innovation continued to drive the company’s momentum in our fiscal first quarter, led by double-digit growth in our channels business and the global success of our film and television content,” commented News Corp chairman and chief executive Rupert Murdoch. “Even against considerable currency headwinds due to a stronger dollar, we were able to increase News Corp’s revenue and adjusted segment operating profit over the prior year quarter while continuing to make key investments to position us for future growth”.

Sky Italia saw revenues fall to $23 million on the quarter, compared to last years $119 million, the combination of generally higher programming costs and the one-off cost of Olympic broadcast rights.

The Italian satellite operation also saw a loss of 40,000 subscribers on the quarter to 4.86 million.