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Oprah Winfrey Network pulls stronger ratings, finally makes money after 4 years

July 31
4:44 AM 2013

The Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) reported stronger ratings as well as advertising growth after four years after its debut. The network was a joint venture with Discovery Communications Inc., which took the happy news of the station's quick turnaround.

"OWN is now cash flow positive and starting to pay down the investment Discovery has made in the venture," said Discovery Chief Executive David Zaslav. Two popular shows, "The Have and Have Nots" and "Love Thy Neighbor", spearheaded the growth. The two series were produced by Tyler Perry.

However, despite this good news, OWN stocks fell 4.3% to US$80.74 at the Nasdaq. Discovery now expected revenue to be in the range of US$5.55 billion to US$5.63 billion. This range was below previous forecast of US$5.58 billion to US$5.70 billion. Unfavorable currency fluctuations and acquisition costs of SBS were the major factors that caused these decreases.

Still, the company was hopeful. "As long as we continue to grow our audience, we're going to find very receptive buyers," Zaslav said. Net income was at US$0.82 per share from US$0.77 per share, translating to an increase from US$293 million to US$300 million. 

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