Puss in Boots” gives DreamWorks’ earnings a boost

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DreamWorks Animation SKG

Dream­Works Ani­ma­tion SKG

First-quarter earn­ings at Dream­Works Ani­ma­tion SKG Inc. rose slightly in the first quar­ter as both rev­enue and costs increased, the stu­dio announced Wednesday.

Over half of its rev­enue — or $73.6 mil­lion — came from over­seas ticket sales of its fea­ture film Puss in Boots and its release on home video in the United States. The film grossed about $554 mil­lion at the box office worldwide.

Such other recent films as Kung Fu Panda 2 con­tributed to rev­enue as well.

Net income in the three months end­ing March 31 reached $9.1 mil­lion (11 cents per share), just up from $8.8 mil­lion (10 cents per share) a year ago.

Rev­enue jumped 26% to $136.1 mil­lion from $108.0 mil­lion. Ana­lysts polled by Fact­Set had pre­dicted earn­ings of 8 cents per share on $132.3 mil­lion in revenue.

Rev­enue costs rose to $96.5 mil­lion from $72 mil­lion, while DWA paid $5.1 mil­lion in income taxes in the first quar­ter — up by 38% from the same period last year.

Second-quarter and full-year results for Dream­Works Ani­ma­tion are expected to be dri­ven by Mada­gas­car 3: Europe’s Most Wanted, which comes to the­aters on June 8. The film will com­plete with Pixar Ani­ma­tion Studio’s Brave.

How­ever, because of the sum­mer Olympics, Mada­gas­car 3 will be released late over­seas, DWA chief finan­cial offi­cer Lou Cole­man, said dur­ing a con­fer­ence call.

The stu­dio will release the movie in Aus­tralia, Italy, Japan, Spain and the Nordic region by the end of this year, and in the United King­dom and Ger­many in 2013.

Cole­man believes that the delay will affect both the box office and the DVD release for Mada­gas­car 3. Its dis­trib­u­tors will spend more on adver­tis­ing in the sec­ond quar­ter, he added.

TV rev­enue from Kung Fu Panda 2 and home enter­tain­ment rev­enue for Puss In Boots will also drive results in the sec­ond quar­ter, the com­pany said.

Dream­Works Ani­ma­tion shares closed up 36 cents (2%) Wednes­day at $18.46 on the Nas­daq in the reg­u­lar ses­sion. They rose another 64 cents (3.5%) to $19.10 in after-hours trading.

Shares of DWA have dropped by 10% since it announced a sharp fall in profit in its fourth quarter.

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