The Warner Music Group today (Dec. 1) reported a net loss of $30 million, or 21 cents per diluted share, on sales of $905 million for the three-month period ended Sept. 30.
Those results represent a dramatic improvement from the $137 million loss, or $1.27 per diluted share, the company posted last year in its fiscal fourth quarter, when revenues were $798 million.
In addition to greatly reducing losses, revenue grew 13% over the volume the company produced in the previous fiscal fourth quarter.
For the full year, the Warner Music Group reported a loss of $169 million, or $1.40 per diluted share, on revenues of $3.5 billion. While that too is a dramatic improvement over the $1.4 billion loss it reported in the previous year when sales were $3.44 billion, the red ink then was associated with costs from the company’s acquisition from Time Warner in Feb. 2004 and charges related to the subsequent restructuring implemented by the new management team.
Wall Street reacted positively to the news; in morning trading shares traded up 69 cents to $18.74 by noon.
In a statement, company chairman and CEO Edgar Bronfman Jr., said, “This report demonstrates that Warner Music Group is translating its vision and marketplace momentum into results.” Moreover, he said, the company digital music business yielded dramatic growth and represented 6% of fourth quarter revenue. He also said, that the company’s digital sales was outpacing the decline of revenue from its physical goods, which bucks trends, at least in the United States.