News Corp profit beats as cost cuts in news business pay off

Wed Aug 12, 2015 7:17pm EDT
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By Devika Krishna Kumar

(Reuters) - News Corp (NWSA.O: Quote) reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit on Wednesday, helped by cost cuts in its news and information services business that includes Dow Jones and the Wall Street Journal.

Shares of the company, controlled by Rupert Murdoch, rose about 5.5 percent in extended trading.

News Corp said it was reviewing strategic options for Amplify, its flagship digital education brand. Chief Executive Robert Thomson said on a call with analysts that the company was in the final phase of talks with a potential acquirer for the business.

"We and most investors had basically written off Amplify," Macquarie Research analyst Timothy Nollen told Reuters.

The news would likely be taken positively because it shows that "they tried hard and that they've given up," Nollen said.

The company recorded an impairment charge of $371 million related to its digital education business.

News Corp, whose revenue is largely dependent on its newspaper holdings in the United States, Australia and Great Britain, has been diversifying its business as readers shift to digital media and newspapers advertising revenue slides.

The company kicked off in June a major reorganization including job cuts at Dow Jones.   Continued...

Passers-by walk near the News Corporation building in New York June 28, 2012. . REUTERS/Keith Bedford