Canada's Corus beats profit estimates, shares rise

(Reuters) - Canadian media company Corus Entertainment Inc CJRb.TO beat quarterly profit estimates and aims to focus on targeted advertisements to increase revenue from TV this year, sending its shares up as much as 25 percent Thursday morning.

Corus shares were set for their biggest one-day percentage gain ever.

The company, which focuses on producing original content to counter competition from online streaming services like Netflix NLFX.O, said it will invest a lot more in technology to provide audiences and their advertisers with a better experience.

“We are following our viewers, and we’re satisfying our viewers’ new consumption habits, many of whom want to binge-view our content,” Chief Executive Officer Doug Murphy said in a conference call with analysts.

Murphy said the company’s technology road map will soon enable it to offer advertisers a customer experience similar to what their digital competitors can provide, but within a trusted and a safe environment.

Corus said the digital rollouts for advertisers will help it to get access to more pertinent customer data, potentially helping the company target the same audience that companies like Netflix and Hulu cater to.

Corus, which bought Shaw Media from its sister concern Shaw Communications SJRb.TO, has seen revenue from TV advertisements fall for the past two quarters as more and more advertisers turn to digital platforms.

The company, which operates a network of radio stations and children’s TV channels including YTV, Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network, said its net income attributable to shareholders rose to C$40.0 million, or 19 Canadian cents per share in the second quarter ended Feb. 28, from C$24.9 million, or 12 Canadian cents per share, a year earlier.

On an adjusted basis, the company earned 20 Canadian cents per share compared to the average analyst expectation of 11 Canadian cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Total revenue rose to C$369.5 million from C$368.2 million.

Reporting by Akshara P in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber