Earnings: Vivendi Q1 Profits Fall 5.6 Percent; Universal Music Digital Up 33 Percent

This story was written by David Kaplan.
Entertainment and telecom conglomerate Vivendi (EPA: VIV) said its Q1 EBITA dropped 5.6 percent to $1.86 billion (1.203 billion) from $1.91 billion last year. Although not exactly an indication of what Vivendi called a "very good quarter" in its earnings statement, it was still enough to beat analysts' aggregated forecast of $1.7 billion, according to Reuters. Adjusted net income was $1.07 billion, a fall of 9.6 percent from Q107's $1.1 billion. Revenues in Q1 were on the positive side, coming in at $8.2 billion, rising 5.2 percent over the year before. Highlights from the owner of Universal Music Group, Vivendi Games, Maroc Telecom and other media properties included:

-- UMG: The music label's EBITA was $171 million, a rise of 94.7 percent year-over-year. The company cited digital sales growth of 33 percent and the inclusion of BMG Music Publishing. However, revenues were essentially flat at $1,598 million0.6 percent above Q107.

-- Vivendi Games:  Vivendi Games, which includes Blizzard Entertainment, the producer of World of Warcraft, saw Q1 revenue fall 24.1 percent at $341 million. Blizzard Entertainment's revenues were $297 million.

-- Maroc: The telecom unit's revenues grew 11.6 percent to $950 million during the quarter, as revenues were up 15.5 percent to $688 million. Earnings release (PDF)

By David Kaplan