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Sale of Cable-TV Unit Boosts Times Mirror Profit

October 25, 1985|THOMAS B. ROSENSTIEL

Times Mirror reported that its third-quarter earnings rose 37% from a year ago, although much of the gain came from sale of a Connecticut cable-TV company.

Not counting the gain, earnings were up 5% over the year before.

Net income was also helped by higher profits in newspaper publishing, forest products, cable television and book publishing.

The Los Angeles-based diversified media company, which publishes the Los Angeles Times and other newspapers, said it posted profits of $64.1 million in the quarter, up from $46.8 million in the third quarter last year. However, $14.8 million of the quarterly earnings came from the sale of the company's Hartford Cable Television system.

Revenue for the quarter rose 5% to $714 million from $681 in 1984.

Much of the profits from existing operations came from newspaper publishing, where pretax operating profits were up 9% from last year.

Cable-television operations also showed higher earnings than last year, reporting $10.2 million in operating profits, 26% more than last year.

Book publishing, too, showed improved operating profits, totaling $14.8 million, 6% more than last year.

The company's newsprint and forest products earned a $7-million operating profit after losing $5.3 million last year due in part to a strike.

Operating profit from broadcast television operations were roughly the same as last year's.

Information services, whose companies make products from flight training manuals to medical monitoring products, posted operating profits 4% below last year's. And operating profit from other operations, which includes magazines, fell 36% from last year to $2.4 million.

In addition to the Times, Times Mirror owns five other newspapers, including Newsday on Long Island, seven broadcast television stations, five magazines and cable operations in 15 states.

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