AMC Networks Leaps After Earnings Top Wall Street Estimates

AMC Networks rises sharply after the TV network reports better-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings.
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Shares of AMC Networks  (AMCX) - Get Report spiked more than 25% after the New York TV network reported fourth-quarter earnings that exceeded analysts' expectations.

Shares of AMC Networks rose 25.38% to $66.54 on Friday. 

AMC Networks reported GAAP earnings of $2.09 a share compared with a year-earlier loss of 15 cents.  Adjusted earnings in the latest fourth quarter were $2.72 a share.

Revenue for the quarter ended Dec. 31 dropped 0.6% to $780.2 million from $785.2 million.

A survey of analysts by FactSet expected GAAP earnings of 29 cents a share, or an adjusted 50 cents, on revenue of $705 million.

"2020 was a year of strong performance for AMC Networks, as we continued to transform our company while successfully navigating what has been a uniquely challenging and uncertain operating environment," said President and CEO Josh Sapan in a statement. 

"AMC Networks is now the worldwide leader in targeted streaming and, with the addition of our new AMC+ premium bundled offering, streaming is now the most significant growth area of our company," he added.

The company swung to a profit due to mark-to-market gains on investments in the current period and a rise in operating income.

"Our distribution relationships are strong, now supported by our streaming offerings, with our ability to complete several renewals in 2020 ... Our digital advertising initiatives are a key priority, including expanded distribution of our content on AVOD and FAST platforms," Sapan said. 

AMC Networks had free cash flow of $686 million at the end of 2020.

"Our strategy is providing us with strong tailwinds and we believe there are significant and sustainable opportunities before us as we continue to reconstitute our company,” he added.

For the year ended Dec. 31, AMC Networks recognized a gain of $76 million related to its shares of FuboTV. AMC Networks sold 3.5 million shares of FuboTV in December and January.