NBCUniversal Q4 broadcast TV revenue up 14%

NBC Sports studio Rio Olympics 2016
NBC's broadcast of the 2016 Summer Olympics helped boost revenue for the year.

NBCUniversal’s broadcast television revenue jumped 14% to $2.8 billion in the fourth quarter.

The programmer is giving credit for the increase to higher advertising, content licensing and distribution. In particular, advertising revenue increased 12.4% on the back of Thursday Night Football, increased rates and higher political advertising.

Thanks to the timing of some licensing agreements, content licensing revenue increased 20.2% during the quarter. Meanwhile, distribution and other revenue increased 14.1% because of higher retransmission consent fees.

In all, operating cash flow for the division increased 21.1% to $264 million during the quarter, offset in part by an increase in programming and production costs driven by the premiere of Thursday Night Football.

NBCU also reported year-end results today, and broadcast revenue rose 19% to $10.1 billion compared to 2015. With help from $1.2 billion of revenue generated by the broadcast of the 2016 Rio Olympics, operating cash flow increased 69.1% to $1.3 billion for 2016.

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Meanwhile, NBCU’s cable networks revenue grew at a slower rate, up 4% to $2.5 billion for the quarter, due to higher distribution, content licensing and other, and advertising revenue. For the year, cable networks revenue increased 8.7%.

Universal’s filmed entertainment rose 12.6% to $1.8 billion in the fourth quarter, aided by a full quarter of revenue attributable to DreamWorks. DreamWorks also helped boost content licensing revenue by 37.5%. But for the full year, filmed entertainment revenue dropped 12.7% to $6.4 billion because of lower theatrical and home entertainment revenue.

Overall, revenue for NBCUniversal increased 13% to $8.5 billion in the fourth quarter and increased 11% to $31.6 billion for the full year.