Murdoch's 21st Century Fox turns in bumper result
Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox, formerly known as News Corp, has boosted its annual profit but warned the cost of launching its US TV sports networks and currency effects would affect earnings in the year ahead.
"Overall, our businesses are well positioned for continued growth," said John Nallen, 21st Century Fox's chief financial officer.
The company's profit for this financial year was $US6.8 billion ($7.6 billion), more than double the earnings in the previous year.
The result was boosted by $US3.76 billion in gains on the company's purchase of TV assets Sky Deutschland and ESPN Star Sports, and the sale of its stake in NDS Group.
In June, Mr Murdoch's global media empire News Corp split its broadcast and publishing operations.AU
The profitable pay TV, broadcast TV and film operations became 21st Century Fox, and the Australian, US and Britain newspapers, book publishing arm and Australian pay TV business became New News Corp.
What is now New News Corp was classified as discontinued operations in 21st Century Fox's accounts, and those operations made a profit of $US277 million in the year to June 30.
21st Century Fox's result was built on annual revenues of $US27.68 billion, up 10 per cent.
Mr Murdoch said in a statement that, with the split complete, 21st Century Fox "not only delivered strong earnings and revenue growth ... we also positioned ourselves for future success with strategic investments in our global channels businesses".
Mr Nallen said 21st Century Fox's growth in the next financial year would be driven by the company's cable TV business, but its filmed entertainment business would "be down a touch" on the past year.
"In 2014, our growth will be impacted by several strategic initiatives, most notably the launch of sport networks here in the US and Asia as well as the launch of [cable TV network] FXX," Mr Nallen said.
"Additionally, we are expecting adverse currency effects to impact 2014 growth, principally from Latin American currencies and the Indian rupee."
The company's Australian listed shares rose 29¢ to $35.11, while New News Corp shares rose 12.5¢ to $18.09.