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Marvel sees third quarter declines

Even superheroes aren't impervious to the perils of the current economy. With no major feature film releases in Q3, Marvel Entertainment results took a dip from the same period in 2008.
November 3, 2009

Even superheroes aren’t impervious to the perils of the current economy. With no major feature film releases in Q3, Marvel Entertainment results took a dip from the same period in 2008.

While Q3 2008 saw the release of Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk, Marvel’s Q3 2009 had no similar tent poles and net sales came in at US$105.7 million with a net income of US$20.4 million, versus 2008′s net sales of US$182.5 million and net income of US$50.6 million.

Marvel chairman Morton Handel noted that the company is focusing its efforts on the May 2010 release of Iron Man 2 and related licensing opps, as well as making progress on its upcoming film slate of Thor, The First Avenger: Captain America and The Avengers feature film projects.

Net sales in the licensing segment also took a dip without a major feature film presence, with licensing fees from Hasbro generating US$6.3 million (US$3.8 million within domestic consumer products and US$2.5 million within international consumer products) compared to a total contribution from the toyco of US$12.0 million in Q3 2008.

Meanwhile, net sales in the publishing segment saw a 6% decline from last year’s numbers, losing US$3.2 million on the custom publishing and ad revenue side compared to the prior year period. The decline was partially offset by a year-over-year increase of US$1.6 million in revenue from the book sales.

On the film side, net sales were down to US$24.8 million from US$90.2 million in Q3 2008. Net sales in this third quarter primarily reflect the recognition of revenues associated with the international pay-TV windows for Iron Man and domestic pay-TV windows for The Incredible Hulk as well as contributions from DVD sales for both.

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