Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Time Warner's Rosy Earnings Mask Continuing AOL and Publishing Weakness; Reuters Crossing Fingers for Profits

Dow Jones News reports along with others on the rosy earnings report from Time Warner, which reported strong revenue growth in entertainment and cable operations. Cable growth was largely based on Internet access, though, while subscribers continue to drop off of AOL and reduce subscription incomes; ad revenues allowed AOL to post a modest 2.1 percent revenue gain, while ads also buoyed publishing revenues 3.5 percent. In other words except for movies and ad-driven revenues there's stil core weakness this premium content provider's domain. Combine this with the recent Reuters earnings report that is only moderately hopeful that successful cost-cutting can keep ahead of continiung softness in their core financial sector revenues enough to post some black ink this year and you don't get a happy picture in general for premium content outside of ad revenues. Lots of tea leaves to interpret here, but bottom line is that premium content providers have to continue to become much more adept at leveraging the value of contextual content. Effective workflow has been one leading option to date beyond ads, but there's far more that needs to be done to get premium content on the track to long-term health.
Post a Comment