Comcast's NBCU books $250 million in profit from Rio Olympics coverage

2016 Rio Olympics - Closing ceremony - Maracana - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 21/08/2016. REUTERS/Ricardo Moraes

(Reuters) - NBC Universal, a unit of Comcast Corp, said the company booked more than $250 million in profit from the Rio Olympics coverage, helped by strong advertising sales.

Advertising sales rose more than 20 percent to $1.2 billion, compared with the 2012 London Olympics, NBC Universal Chief Executive Steve Burke said on Wednesday.

Despite a drop in viewership, NBC had said in August that it could top the $120 million profit that it had recorded from the 2012 Olympics coverage.

Comcast has paid about $12 billion for the U.S. rights to broadcast Olympics Games through 2032.

NBC had lost as much as $200 million from certain broadcasts in the past, Burke said at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2016 Media, Communications and Entertainment Conference.

Shares of Comcast were marginally higher at $65.23 in afternoon trading on Wednesday.

Reporting by Rishika Sadam in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva