Paramount Global, the owners of Network Ten and Paramount+, which is also the US television network the AFL is banking on in an attempt to raise the price of AFL rights in Australia, has announced that its TV division has recorded a 6% drop in revenue.
In their latest filings with the SEC in the United States, the company said its TV division saw a 6% drop in revenue year-over-year. Advertising revenue was down 13% year over year, primarily reflecting a 17 percentage point impact from CBS’ airing of Super Bowl LV in the prior year quarter.
Currently, the AFL is trying to convince the American network to raise their hands to bid for the 2025 AFL rights after AFL management met with network executives last week in New York. The US visit is seen as a move to remove a key Australian code from Australian-owned networks such as the Foxtel, Nine and Seven networks.
On the bright side Paramount Global (formerly ViacomCBS) announced that it added 6.8 million new Paramount+ subscribers in the first quarter of 2022. Netflix announced a loss of 200,000 subscribers, with the network facing a loss of 2 million subscribers in the next quarter.
Paramount Global, formerly ViacomCBS, also reported an overall global subscriber total of 62.4 million, but growth figures for Australia were not broken down, nor were network revenue figures 10 .
The decline in the number of sports subscribers watching events such as the Super Bowl is seen as a problem for the US network whose real strength is entertainment movie content spanning TV dramas and documentaries.
Paramount CEO Bob Bakish, who met with AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan, said last week that the company aims to reach 100 million Paramount+ subscribers by 2024.
During that revenue, it also boasted on the earnings call that total content consumption had grown to 14 billion hours across its owned-and-operated platforms.
A major contributor to growth is original programming, including Halo and Star Trek movies.
Growth in subscribers contributed to an increase in the company’s bottom line, with revenue from the service increasing 148% year-over-year to $585 million in the first quarter of 2022.
“The first quarter once again demonstrated the power and potential of Paramount’s unique assets and the company’s continued momentum,” said Bob Bakish, CEO and President of Paramount Global.
Recently, Netflix announced that it lost around 200,000 customers in the first quarter of 2022, marking its first drop in subscribers in a decade.
The company has since launched a series of cost-cutting measures, canceling shows like Space Force and gutting the editorial staff of its fan site Tudum.
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