Comcast beats The Street, gung-ho on NBC


Q4 revenues rose 2.9% for Comcast to $9.07 billion, which was better than Wall Street had expected. As for the pending NBC Universal acquisition, CEO Brian Roberts remains excited.

In evaluating the numbers, Wells Fargo Securities analyst Marci Ryvicker notedthat corporate revenues were significantly above expectations, up 14.3% to $138 million. The corporate segment includes such things as Comcast Interactive Media and Comcast-Spectacor.

Programming revenues rose 5.2% to $368 million. Cable revenues continue to be far and away the biggest segment, although slower growth. They were up 2.6% to $8.56 billion.

For the entire company, operating cash flow grew 1.1% to $3.41 billion for the quarter.

Just like TV stations, Comcast is enjoying a recovery in local ad sales. The company reported that ad revenues were down 7% in Q4, but excluding political the core business was up 10%.

CEO Roberts noted that the company made its filing with the FCC last week to tout the benefits of its proposed deal to acquire control of NBC Universal. “Beyond that, we’re beginning the planning process and remain very excited about the prospects of this transaction and the opportunity to accelerate the value creation for our shareholders,” Roberts said. He’ll get a chance to talk more about the deal Thursday in Capitol Hill appearances on both the Senate and House sides.