Comcast tops revenue estimates as theme park growth offsets broadband decline

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Written by Samarhita A and Helen Koster

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Comcast’s quarterly revenue topped Wall Street estimates on Thursday, as growth in its streaming and theme park businesses, including a widely watched NFL playoff game, more than offset losses in broadband subscribers.

Revenue rose 2.3% to $31.25 billion in the fourth quarter, beating analysts’ estimates of $30.51 billion, according to LSEG data.

Shares of the media giant rose more than 4% in trading before the bell.

Comcast lost 34,000 broadband customers in the quarter, less than the loss of 61,000 customers it had expected, according to FactSet but more than the 18,000 broadband customers it lost in the previous quarter.

During the company’s call with investors in October, CFO Jason Armstrong said it expects “somewhat higher” broadband subscriber losses in the fourth quarter.

The company has faced pressure from wireless carriers such as Verizon and T-Mobile, which offer broadband services aimed at low-income customers.

Revenue for the company’s Peacock streaming service rose 56.5% from a year earlier, surpassing $1 billion in quarterly revenue for the first time to reach $1.03 billion. Paid subscribers rose by 3 million in the fourth quarter to 31 million.

The company has been investing in live programming in an attempt to attract more viewers to Peacock. This month, Peacock was the first streaming service to exclusively broadcast an NFL playoff game. The Kansas City Chiefs-Miami Dolphins game averaged 23 million viewers and became the most-streamed event in US history.

Comcast reported a 5.7% increase in revenue in its Content and Experiences segment, which includes NBCUniversal, to $11.5 billion.

Films like “Oppenheimer,” “Super Mario Bros. Movie” and “Fast

Theme park business revenues rose 12.2% to $2.37 billion, supported by the presence of theme parks in Osaka, Japan, and Hollywood, California.

The company raised its dividend by $0.08, to $1.24 per share on an annual basis for the year 2024.

(Reporting by Helen Koster in New York and Samarhitha Arunasalam in Bengaluru; Editing by David Gregorio)

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