First quarter sales dropped to US$3.07bn, down from US$3.32bn, in the three months to December as film and theatre went down by 28% and 48% respectively, due to the number and mix of current quarter releases.
The company reported a 35% increase in net earnings to US$537mln from US$396mln though adjusted earnings per share fell slightly to US$1.03.
Across its networks, a 1% increase in advertising was offset by a 4% decrease in affiliate revenues.
Overall, Media Networks sales decreased 1% to $2.56bn, though international income increased 13%, primarily driven by the acquisition of Argentine network Telefe.
Bob Bakish, chief executive, said the company is on track to achieve US$10mln in new cost savings in the current fiscal year.
In separate but nearly identical statements issued late Thursday, both companies’ boards announced the formation of special committees to evaluate a potential combination.