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Why Did Time Warner’s Theatrical Revenues Decline in 4Q17?

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TWX’s theatrical revenues in 2017

In 2017, Time Warner’s (TWX) theatrical products unit, which is part of its Warner Bros. segment, reported ~$6.0 billion in revenues—up 7.6% YoY (year-over-year). The increase in theatrical revenues was driven by strong growth in the home entertainment and television licensing businesses. The release of hit movie titles such as Wonder Woman and It also contributed to theatrical products’ revenues.

Despite its higher television licensing revenues, theatrical products’ revenues declined in 4Q17 due to lower home entertainment revenues related to the comparison with last year’s release of Suicide Squad.

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Releases in 2017

In 2017, the company’s release of the theatrical film and home video releases of Wonder Woman, the theatrical film releases of It and Justice League, and the home video release of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them all led to strong growth in theatrical products’ revenues. In 2018, the company expects to see a higher increase in television licensing revenues, backed by the licensing of the Harry Potter franchise.

According to tracking firm Box Office Mojo, super-hit movie Justice League had earned more than $655.9 million globally at the end of January. Warner Bros. films collected more than $5 billion at the global box office in 2017, of which five Warner Bros. movies—Wonder Woman, Dunkirk, Kong: Skull Island, It, and Justice League—each grossed more than $500 million at the global box office.

Notably, Warner Bros. is the second studio, after Walt Disney (DIS), that has crossed the milestone of $5 billion.

Warner Bros. market share

According to Box Office Mojo, Disney (Buena Vista Pictures) topped the domestic box office with a 28.0% market share in 2018 (ended February 25). Sony/Columbia (SNE), Twenty-First Century Fox (FOXA), Universal (CMCSA), and Warner Bros. had market shares of 17.0%, 14.4%, 10.4%, and 7.5%, respectively.

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