(Adds comments on Time Warner, updates shares)
Aug 6 Twenty-First Century Fox Inc, the
film and TV company controlled by Rupert Murdoch, reported a
quarterly profit that beat Wall Street's expectations as
executives stressed that they would not make a new bid for Time
Fox on Tuesday withdrew the $80 billion offer that Time
Warner had rejected. On Wednesday, Murdoch made a rare
appearance on Fox's quarterly earnings call and reinforced that
he had ended his pursuit of the rival company.
"This is our resolute decision," Murdoch said. "While we
remain opportunistic and nimble, we are a strategically complete
company and have a clear sense of where we are going."
Fox has no plans to pursue another content company as an
alternative, Chase Carey, the chief operating officer, added.
Shares of Fox rose 4.1 percent at $33.65 in after-hours
trading on Wednesday, up from their earlier $32.33 close on
Despite Fox's announcement on Tuesday that it would no
longer pursue a deal with Time Warner, some investors questioned
whether the move might be a ploy to drive down the Time Warner
stock price and open the way for another bid by Murdoch at a
For the fiscal fourth quarter that ended June 30, Fox
reported $1.8 billion in operating income before depreciation
and amortization, a 19 percent gain from the same period a year
earlier, helped by strong results from the summer blockbuster
movie "X-Men: Days of Future Past."
On an adjusted basis, the company earned 42 cents per share,
beating analysts' average estimate of 38 cents, according to
Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. Revenue rose 17 percent to $8.42
Earnings in the film studio nearly tripled from the prior
year to $339 million, driven mainly by the X-Men movie - the
seventh in the series based on the Marvel Comics series - and
the animated film "Rio 2."
The X-Men movie has grossed $740 million since it was
released on May 23.
The success of the films, and others such as "The Fault in
our Stars," helped the film studio become the first to cross the
$3 billion mark in worldwide box office sales this year, the
Fox's cable network business, its largest, saw its earnings
rise 11 percent to $1.2 billion, boosted by higher advertising
sales and an increase in subscriptions to regional sports
channels. Domestic advertising revenue grew 12 percent.
Fox separated from News Corp in June 2013. News
Corp retains the former group's print businesses.
(Reporting by Lisa Richwine in Los Angeles and Abhirup Roy in
Bangalore; Editing by Ted Kerr and Leslie Adler)