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The 25 Most Profitable Media Companies

Published: September 29, 2012
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Source: SNL

Walt Disney Co. has long held the top seat among media and entertainment earners, pulling in the largest quarterly revenues and profits of any company in the sector. Between its media networks, theme parks and even its movie studio, Disney has dominated.

News Corp., meanwhile, has historically followed Disney in the rankings, buoyed by its own cable network portfolio and movie business.

But although News Corp. was able to maintain its No. 2 seat in the revenue rankings, recording $8.37 billion in fiscal fourth-quarter revenues, the media company saw its bottom line plummet in the period. Indeed, not only did News Corp. lose its No. 2 seat in the net income rankings to Thomson Reuters Corp., but the media conglomerate fell off SNL Kagan's list of top 25 media earners altogether. It was not so much a fall from grace as much as a fall to a quarterly net loss.

For the June quarter, News Corp. reported a net loss attributable to company shareholders of $1.55 billion, compared to net income of $683 million in the year-ago period. The quarterly results included a $2.9 billion pretax impairment and restructuring charge primarily related to the company's publishing businesses, as well as $15 million of pretax loss that included the impact of a property sale in the U.K.

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