NBCUniversal reports higher Peacock losses as it shows CEO the door

Peacock’s losses continue to widen this quarter, NBCUniversal’s parent company Comcast reported Thursday, just days after the company announced that Jeff Shell’s time as NBCU chief executive had ended. Peacock had $704 million in losses in the first quarter of 2023, a significant jump from $456 million in the same period a year earlier.

In the fourth quarter of 2022, Peacock reported an adjusted EBITDA loss of $978 million. The company previously warned shareholders that it expects losses to peak at around $3 billion this year.

However, Peacock also saw subscriber growth, adding two million paying subscribers to bring the total to 22 million, up from 20 million in the prior quarter, a significant increase from a year earlier when it had 13 million subscribers. payment.

Peacock saw revenue rise 45% to $685 million.

Comcast announced Monday that Shell will leave the company, effective immediately, following an investigation into an allegation of an inappropriate relationship within the company. Meanwhile, Comcast Chairman Mike Cavanagh will take over from Shell.

“Today is my last day as CEO of NBCUniversal. I had an inappropriate relationship with a woman at the company, which I deeply regret. I am truly sorry to have let my colleagues at Comcast and NBCUniversal down, they are the most talented people in the business and the opportunity to work with them for the past 19 years has been a privilege,” Shell said in a statement.

The subscriber gain is a small victory for the streamer as its biggest rival, Disney+, dipped in subscribers for the first time, losing 2.4 million global subscribers to bring the total to 161.8 million.

Netflix missed analyst expectations on its first-quarter earnings, reporting only an addition of 1.75 million subscribers versus an estimated 2.3 million.

“We delivered strong first-quarter results as our team executed exceptionally well,” Comcast CEO Brian L. Roberts wrote in today’s letter to shareholders. “We increased Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EPS and generated a significant amount of free cash flow. We accomplished all of this while continuing to invest in future growth initiatives. Additionally, more importantly, we had strong revenue growth in our high-margin connectivity businesses while growing our Peacock subscribers by more than 60% year-over-year.”

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