Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp yesterday reported a 27 per cent increase in fourth-quarter profit, but warned investors that it faces tough times ahead.
The media giant said that its film studios, national American newspapers and Fox News channel had done well, helping it to report profits of £1.13bn (£565m).
Fox Interactive Media, the division in charge of social networking hit MySpace, put in a bumper performance, with revenues up by 57 per cent at $1.12bn for the year. It expects growth to slow to a still-healthy 30 per cent in 2009.
Increased advertising sales at the Fox News channel lifted profits at its cable network by 10 per cent, bucking the trend experienced by Viacom and CBS – who both blamed an advertising slump for worse-than-expected results last week.
Its national newspaper unit also got a boost from the acquisition of Dow Jones which it purchased for $5bn in December. The company, which includes Dow Jones Newswires and the Wall Street Journal, added $24m in operating income.
But Murdoch warned that the economic downturn was battering local television advertising, and that growth would slow to low single digits in 2009.
“Although we clearly face more challenging conditions in 2009, we’re well positioned to deliver continued, if less robust growth,” said Murdoch.