Tags: Lions | Gate | Twilight | Shares

Lions Gate Tops Estimates on 'Twilight' Video; Shares Rise

Thursday, 30 May 2013 06:03 PM

Lions Gate Entertainment Corp., maker of the "Twilight" teen vampire movies, Thursday posted fourth-quarter profit that beat analysts' estimates, helped by home-video sales from the series. The shares rose as much as 5.6 percent in afterhours treading.

Net income of $163 million, or $1.10 a share, compared with a loss of $22.7 million, or 17 cents, a year earlier, Lions Gate said in a statement. Revenue rose 22 percent to $785.7 million in the period ended March 31, beating estimates of $746.5 million. Analysts had forecast profit of 43 cents, the average of nine estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

Lions Gate, run from Santa Monica, California, has staked out the young adult market as a rich vein with the “Twilight” films and the 2012 hit dystopian movie "The Hunger Games." The first sequel to that motion picture, "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire," is scheduled for release in November.

"The 'Twilight' video was a big contributor," said Matt Harrigan, a Denver-based analyst with Wunderlich Securities Inc., who recommends buying the shares. "If they continue to create these franchises, there are still upsides on the stock."

Lions Gate shares rose 4.4 percent to $29.25 at 5:01 p.m. in extended trading after reaching as high as $29.60. The stock fell 1.4 percent to $28.03 at the close in New York and has gained 71 percent this year, compared with 17 percent for the Russell 2000 Index.

Film Prospects

The January 2012 acquisition of Summit Entertainment brought the "Twilight" films to Vancouver-based Lions Gate. The deal also gave the studio two new potential franchises: "Ender’s Game," also set for November release, and "Divergent," scheduled for 2014. Both are first installments of popular young-adult novels.

Quarterly results also were helped by revenue from television, which include the "Mad Men" and "Anger Management" series, Harrigan said in an interview.

Profit also was bolstered by international box-office sales for "The Impossible," a film about the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, and the home-video release of low-cost horror films, including "Sinister" and "The Possession," Harrigan said in the interview.

"The Impossible," with only $19 million in sales in the U.S. and Canada, took in $153.5 million in international markets, according to researcher Box Office Mojo.

Lions Gate plans a conference call Friday at 9 a.m. New York time at +1-800-230-1092 for U.S. investors and +1-612-332-0107 for others.

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Lions Gate Entertainment Corp., maker of the "Twilight" teen vampire movies, Thursday posted fourth-quarter profit that beat analysts' estimates, helped by home-video sales from the series.
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Thursday, 30 May 2013 06:03 PM
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