News Corp tops estimates as Foxtel, books unit drive gains

(Reuters) – News Corp (NWSA.O) topped Wall Street profit targets on Thursday, as it benefited from gains at its newly acquired TV network and recorded double-digit growth in its real-estate listings and book publishing businesses.

Undated handout image of the News Corp logo. REUTERS/News Corp/Handout

News Corp’s subscription video services division that includes Australian pay TV company Foxtel – acquired by Rupert Murdoch-controlled News Corp earlier this year – contributed $610 million to its overall revenue in the fourth quarter ended June 30.

The company’s news business, which houses the Wall Street Journal and the New York Post, made $1.29 billion in revenue, rising 1 percent from a year earlier and accounting for almost half of overall revenue as the number of digital subscribers grew.

Revenue at News Corp’s online real-estate listings unit rose 19 percent while its book publishing division – home to HarperCollins – saw a 20 percent jump in revenue.

News Corp said net loss available to shareholders narrowed to $372 million in the fourth quarter from $430 million a year earlier. Excluding one-time items, the company earned 8 cents per share, above analysts’ average expectation of 6 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Total revenue surged about 30 percent to $2.69 billion, above estimates of $2.65 billion.

(The story corrects paragraph two to say the subscription video services division, and not just Foxtel, contributed $610 million to overall revenue.)

Reporting by Remya Padmadas in Bengaluru; Editing by Sai Sachin Ravikumar

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