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Viacom Inc. Reports Operating Results (10-Q)

July 28, 2009 | About:

Viacom Inc. (VIA) filed Quarterly Report for the period ended 2009-06-30.

Viacom is a leading global entertainment content company whose family of prominent and respected brands includes the multiplatform properties of MTV Networks BET Networks Paramount Pictures Paramount Home Entertainment and DreamWorks. MTV Networks a unit of Viacom is one of the world\'s leading creators of programming and content across all media platforms. MTV Networks connects with its audiences through its robust consumer products businesses and its more than three hundred interactive properties worldwide including online broadband wireless and interactive television services and also has licensing agreements joint ventures and syndication deals whereby all of its programming services can be seen worldwide. Viacom Inc. has a market cap of $1.47 billion; its shares were traded at around $25.6 with a P/E ratio of 11.4 and P/S ratio of 0.1.

Highlight of Business Operations:

Revenues decreased $558 million, or 14%, to $3.299 billion in the second quarter of 2009. Revenues decreased $770 million, or 11%, to $6.204 billion in the six months ended June 30, 2009. The following table presents our revenues by component:

To better align our organization and cost structure with recent economic conditions, we undertook a strategic review of our businesses in the fourth quarter of 2008, which resulted in $454 million of restructuring and other charges. As a result of these initiatives, we expect to save approximately $200 million in 2009. Approximately half of the savings result from the restructuring charges which were principally comprised of workforce reductions and will be realized via lower compensation costs primarily included as a component of selling, general and administrative expenses. We expect to continue to experience similar levels of savings from the headcount reductions in future years, subject to the performance of our operations which may require further changes to our headcount, either increases or decreases, to effectively and efficiently manage our operations. In 2009, our cash savings are partially offset by remaining severance payments to be made pursuant to our restructuring plan. With respect to the other charges, the savings are primarily related to reduced programming amortization attributable to abandoned programming included as a component of operating expenses, and will diminish ratably through 2011. Despite these savings, overall programming expenses are likely to grow in the future as we continue to invest in programming in the normal course of business. During the quarter and six months ended June 30, 2009, our total expense reduction of $352 million and $439 million, respectively, includes approximately $50 million and $100 million, respectively, in cost savings related to these initiatives. During the second quarter of 2009 we took new actions resulting in severance charges of $16 million in the Media Networks segment and $17 million in the Filmed Entertainment segment. We will continue to evaluate the impact of current and future economic conditions on our various businesses and consider alternatives which, if undertaken, could result in future restructuring charges.

Operating expenses decreased $295 million, or 13%, to $1.943 billion in the second quarter of 2009. Production and programming expenses decreased $148 million, or 11%, to $1.181 billion primarily due to participation costs in the prior year associated with the theatrical release of Iron Man and the re-release of the Indiana Jones trilogy on DVD, as well as lower amortization on other releases, partially offset by amortization of film costs related to the theatrical release of Imagine That. Reduced amortization attributable to the programming abandoned in the fourth quarter of 2008 was substantially offset by our continuing investment in programming. Distribution and other costs decreased $147 million, or 16%, to $762 million primarily related to the timing of theatrical releases, a reduction in home entertainment expenses which included costs associated with the release of the Indiana Jones trilogy in the prior year, and lower costs related to reduced sales of Rock Band.

Operating expenses decreased $356 million, or 9%, to $3.691 billion for the six months ended June 30, 2009. Distribution and other costs decreased $225 million, or 13%, to $1.468 billion driven by the factors described above. Production and programming expenses decreased $131 million, or 6%, to $2.223 billion also due to the

Selling, general and administrative expenses (“SG&A”) decreased $40 million, or 5%, to $690 million in the second quarter of 2009. SG&A expenses decreased $56 million, or 4%, to $1.323 billion for the six months ended June 30, 2009. The decrease in both periods is primarily due to lower employee compensation costs and a reduction in travel expenses related to our 2008 restructuring and other cost savings initiatives, partially offset by $33 million of severance charges in the second quarter and increased bad debt expense.

Operating income decreased $206 million, or 26%, to $586 million in the second quarter of 2009. Filmed Entertainment contributed $111 million of the decline resulting from the underperformance of certain theatrical releases in the quarter, a difficult comparison against Iron Man in the prior year, lower home entertainment profits and the late June release of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, as well as $17 million of severance charges recorded in the quarter. Media Networks contributed $94 million of th

Read the The complete ReportVIA is in the portfolios of Donald Yacktman of Yacktman Asset Management Co..

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