Updated from 9:14 a.m. EST with correction of 2014 guidance.
NEW YORK (TheStreet) - Time Warner (TWX) removed the curtain on Home Box Office, its highly popular and profitable cable channel, disclosing the division generated $4.9 billion in revenue, earning $1.7 billion in operating income in 2013.
The disclosure is Time Warner's first direct depiction of HBO's earnings profile and comes at a time when the media and entertainment conglomerate is moving towards a spinoff of the company's publishing business, Time Inc. While that move, along with other changes to Time Warner's reportable segments give a better glimpse into the profitability of each of the company's various divisions, they will have no impact on earnings.
In the fourth-quarter, Time Warner separated its former 'Networks' reportable segment into Turner and Home Box Office and changed the names of its Film and TV Entertainment unit to Warner Bros. and its Publishing reportable segment to Time Inc.
Time Warner is preparing to spinoff Time Inc. later in 2014.
The company's fourth-quarter earnings showed HBO is the company's second biggest source of operating income and one of its highest margin business. HBO's $1.7 billion in operating income came at an over 34% margin, given the unit's $4.9 billion in 2013 revenue. That may be a helpful disclosure as analysts and investors seek to value the company after its Time Inc. spinoff.
Overall, it 2013 was a record year for Time Warner, highlighted by earnings growth at Turner, HBO and Warner Bros. Turner generated $10 billion in revenue and about $3.5 billion in operating income, while Warner Bros generated $12.3 billion in revenue and $1.3 billion in operating income.
In total, the company generated nearly $30 billion in revenue, a record, and $6.6 billion in operating income.
Soon-to-be spun off Time Inc., however, saw its revenue and operating profits fall in 2013.
"We had another very successful year in 2013, with Turner, Home Box Office and Warner Bros. all posting record profits while also investing for future growth. We grew Adjusted Operating Income by 8% and Adjusted EPS by 16% - our fifth consecutive year of double-digit Adjusted EPS growth," CEO Jeff Bewkes said in a statement.
Time Warner also increased its quarterly dividend 10% to $0.3175 a share. After buying back $3.9 billion in stock in 2013, Time Warner's board increased the company's share repurchase authorization to $5 billion.
Shares in Time Warner fell 1.7% in early Wednesday trading to $61.36.