CBS Posts $12bn Loss in Q3

03 November 2008

NEW YORK: US broadcaster CBS registered an eyewatering Q3 loss of $12.5 billion (€9.8bn; £7.7bn), down from a profit of $343.3 million a year ago, as waning ad revenues and the economic slowdown resulted in a massive impairment charge that wiped $14.12bn from its valuation.

Although chief executive Leslie Moonves argued that ad revenues were not "falling off a cliff", the company's TV, radio and outdoor operations all posted negative growth for the quarter. 

Excluding the impairment charge, however, the company acutally posted a profit of $290.3m, and Moonves said that the organisation would continue its efforts to "right-size our business." 

Total revenues were also up by 3% to $3.38bn, boosted by the purchase of technology news company CNET Networks and the cable syndication of crime drama CSI:New York.

Digital income rose by 6% (with display advertising up by 12% overall), and the company's publishing unit saw revenues improve by 5% to $225m.

As previously reported , CBS's controlling shareholder, Sumner M Redstone, recently sold a portion of his holding, but the media mogul insists there is “not a chance” he will sell the company.

Data sourced from Financial Times; additional content by WARC staff