Viacom rises above recession

Viacom rises above recession

Viacom, owner of music channel MTV, rose above the advertising downturn this week, posting operating income up 14% to $987m (£624m) for the first quarter of 2003.

Revenues were up seven per cent to a record $6.05bn (£3.82bn), compared to $5.67bn (£3.58bn) for the same period last year, boosted by growth in its video and cable networks divisions.

The company owns cable giant CBS and Paramount Pictures, as well as the MTV and VH1 network of channels and is now sole owner of the Comedy Channel, after buying out AOL Time Warner's stake in the business.

Its chairman and chief executive officer, Sumner Redstone, said the prognosis for the rest of 2003 was good.

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