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Viacom Reports Third Quarter Financial Results

Viacom Inc. on Tuesday reported results for its third quarter ended September 30, 2005.

Revenues increased 10% to $5.9 billion from $5.4 billion for the same quarter last year, led by growth of 15% in Cable Networks and 54% in Entertainment, as well as increases in Outdoor and Radio.

Net earnings per diluted share from continuing operations in the third quarter of 2005 increased 12% to $0.47 per diluted share compared with $0.42 per diluted share in the prior year, reflecting a 2% increase in net earnings from continuing operations to $735 million from $722 million in the same quarter last year.

For the third quarter of 2005, Viacom’s free cash flow increased to $879 million from $543 million for the same prior-year period, as higher earnings from continuing operations and improvements in working capital were partially offset by higher cash taxes and increases in capital expenditures.

For the nine months ended September 30, 2005, revenues increased 9% to $17.3 billion and operating income increased 5% to $4.0 billion, paced by Cable Networks, Entertainment and Outdoor. Net earnings from continuing operations was $2.1 billion, or $1.30 per diluted share, for the nine-month period compared with $2.1 billion, or $1.19 per diluted share, for the same prior-year period which included a tax benefit of $149 million. Free cash flow for the nine months ended September 30, 2005 was $2.6 billion compared with $2.4 billion for the same prior-year period.

Viacom Chairman and CEO Sumner Redstone was pleased with the results. Redstone stated that the results have the company on track for this year and also highlight the rationale and promise of their proposed separation into two companies. Viacom expects to complete their separation by the end of the year.

[Source: PR Newswire]

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