Crown Media Reverses Losses in Q3

Crown Media reversed a quarterly loss and its Hallmark Movie Channel is growing subscribers faster than any other Nielsen-rated network, but investors were unimpressed and the stock fell 4% to $2.80 despite a powerful rally Wednesday on Wall Street.

Net income was $5.9 million in the third quarter compared with a loss of $10.2 million in the year-ago quarter. Revenue was about flat at $62.5 million.

Hallmark Movie Channel, buoyed by its recent decision to be rated by Nielsen, added 15 million subscribers and ended the quarter with 38.2 million.

Management on Wednesday promoted the new block of programming on its Hallmark Channel dubbed HOME, which is anchored by The Martha Stewart Show.

Last week, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia reported that its quarterly broadcast revenue fell 47% to $5.8 million because its flagship TV show was making the transition from being syndicated to making its home at the Hallmark Channel.

"We continue to see the move from broadcast to Hallmark on cable as a great opportunity for our company," MSLO chairman Charles Koppelman told analysts a week ago. "It takes time to build an audience on cable, even for someone of Martha's stature."

Crown said Wednesday its subscription revenue dropped 13% to $14 million but that advertising revenue increased 4% to $48.5 million, with the credit going to Hallmark Movie Channel.