Univision Reports Boost in Third-Quarter Results

Spanish-language media giant details financial effects of Soccer World Cup; CEO eyes top primetime ranking among adults 18-49 within three to five years

NEW YORK -- Univision Communications reported a big third-quarter profit gain Thursday on higher revenue thanks to improved advertising and a lack of items that were a drag on year-ago results.

On an earnings conference call, CEO Joe Uva repeated his recent prediction that the Univision network could be the number-one rated network in primetime among adults 18-49 within three to five years. For the first time in its history, Univision ranked as the top network in primetime for the entire week ended Sept. 5 among adults 18-49 regardless of language.

Quarterly profit for the Spanish-language media giant rose to $44.1 million from $5.4 million in the year-ago period. Revenue increased 9.1% to $575 million, or an estimated 4.3% when excluding the soccer World Cup's contributions. TV and interactive revenue rose, while the firm's radio division recorded a revenue decline.

During the third quarter and nine months ended Sept. 30, the 2010 FIFA World Cup contributed an estimated $25.6 million and $100.4 million of incremental revenue, respectively. Profitability was decreased by an estimated $400,000 during the third quarter due to the Cup and increased by $4.5 million for the nine months, the company said.

"Univision continued its trajectory of enhanced financial results and audience growth across all platforms this quarter, further establishing its leadership in the marketplace for both the short and long-term," said Uva. "The company continues to benefit from a marked recovery in the advertising markets and delivered double-digit increases this Upfront in organic growth."

On the conference call, Uva and his team touted the continued ratings success of Univision and its sister networks.