Comcast beats earnings expectations, gains record internet customers for quarter

Comcast reported second-quarter earnings Thursday morning that beat analyst expectations on the top and bottom lines. The company also reported a record of new broadband subscribers for the quarter.

Shares were up more than 2% in premarket trading.

Here’s what Comcast reported compared to Wall Street’s expectations:

  • Adjusted earnings per share: 84 cents vs. 67 cents expected in a Refinitiv survey of analysts
  • Revenue:  $28.55 billion vs. $27.18 billion in the Refinitiv survey
  • High-speed internet customers: 354,000 net adds vs. 270,000 net adds expected in a StreetAccount survey

Comcast said net adds for high-speed internet customers was its best second-quarter performance on record. The company also had its best 2Q for total customer relationships, adding 294,000.

The company said that NBCUniversal’s streaming service, Peacock, has 54 million sign-ups as of this week, and more than 20 million monthly active accounts. Comcast, which doesn’t split out free and paid users, reported 42 million sign-ups across the U.S. in the first quarter of this year.

Comcast’s cable revenue came in at $16 billion, up 10.9% from a year ago. NBCUniversal also saw a boost in revenue, booking $8 billion for the quarter, up 39.2% from a year ago.

NBCUniversal’s entertainment segments had been hampered by the pandemic, which restricted movie theater operations and some theme parks. But partial resumption reflected positively on revenues.

Studios revenue showed signs of recovery, with $2.2 billion in revenue, up 8.4% from last year. Comcast said studio production business returned to pre-pandemic production levels. It was also boosted in the quarter by the premier of “Fast 9,” which netted $600 million worldwide in the box office so far.

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And theme park revenue came in at $1.1 billion, up slightly from a year ago when parks were largely shuttered due to the pandemic. Its locations in Singapore, Japan, California and Florida have all reopened at some capacity, while a new park in Beijing is set to open later this year.

“We remain incredibly bullish on our theme parks,” CEO Brian Roberts said.

Revenue from its Europe-based Sky division was up 14.9%, but customer relationships fell by 248,000 to 23.2 million, which the company attributed to cancellations following the end of soccer season.

Here’s how Comcast’s divisions did for the quarter compared with a year earlier:

  • Cable communications accounted for $16 billion, up 10.9%
  • Media brought in $5.1 billion, up 25.7%
  • Theme parks accounted for $1.1 billion, gaining $958 million
  • Studios reported $2.2 billion, up 8.4%

Disclosure: Comcast is the owner of NBCUniversal, the parent company of CNBC.

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