News Corp.'s Sky-Italia Reports Profit

The company reported operating income of $6 million for the second quarter of fiscal year 2012, a major improvement compared to a $12 million loss a year ago.

ROME – Sky-Italia, the Italian News Corp. subsidiary, on Thursday reported operating income of $6 million for the second quarter of fiscal year 2012, a dramatic improvement compared to a $12 million loss in the year-ago period.
 
Sky-Italia also said it gained around 23,000 new subscribers during the quarter, reaching 5.03 million in total.
 
The company’s results were already included within the results declared by the parent company, News Corp., a day earlier. News Corp’s worldwide income attributed to shareholders surged 71 percent to $1.1 billion.
 
Sky-Italia is the dominant satellite broadcaster in Italy, but it faces stiff competition from Silvio Berlusconi’s Mediaset broadcast and cinema empire, as well as from state broadcaster RAI. Both companies are traditional free-to-air broadcasters.
 
The company said it also faced challenges tied to Italy’s economic malaise and from changes in regulations for Italian braodcasters.
 
“We successfully tackled the competitive challenge from our major industry competitor as well as a challenging regulatory environment to regenerate growth and excitement in our business," said Sky-Italia Chief Operating Officer Chase Carey, pointing to new sports content as a major factor.
 
Carey said he expected the company’s short-term prospects to be hurt by the economic situation in the company, but he said the company was “bullish” over the long term.

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