Marvel announced their Q1 earnings yesterday, and they were once again ahead of the Wall Street pack — although revenue was down, earnings were up.

First-quarter net income fell to $44.5 million, or 57 cents a share, from $45.2 million, or 58 cents a share, a year earlier. Revenue rose 75 percent to $197 million.

Analysts were looking for earnings of 37 cents a share, excluding exceptional items, on revenue of $138.2 million, according to Reuters Estimates.

For 2009, the company forecast earnings of $1.10 to $1.35 a share, lifting the lower end of its previous forecast by 10 cents a share.

Here’s a longer version of the story that touts Marvel’s licensing strength. And a copy of Marvel’s release, with financials. Here’s the relevant portion on Publishing:

As anticipated, our Publishing Segment net sales decreased by $0.7 million to $25.8 million in Q1 2009 from $26.5 million in Q1 2008, principally reflecting lower levels of advertising revenue, offset in part by a modest improvement in the Mass Market channel and higher average selling prices initiated in Q4 2008. Marvel’s major publishing events for 2009 will take place in the second half of the year. Operating income declined by 29% on a year-over-year basis to $7.0 million in Q1 2009, reflecting $1.0 million in investments made in Marvel’s digital media initiatives as well as the reduction in advertising sales. As a result, the Publishing Segment operating margin was 27% in Q1 2009 versus 37% in Q1 2008. Marvel continues to target Publishing Segment margins in the range of 31%-35% for the full year 2009.

Maybe this Punisher Digital Comic featuring Eminem will help Marvel’s bottom line. It was created as an insert in XXL magazine…perhaps that comes under advertising revenue.
Eminempunisher Cover


  1. The drop in publishing revenue is actually quite small considering the events of the last year (in particular, the collapse of advertising), and yes, the price rises probably do have something to do with that. The question is how long that price point is sustainable.

  2. Actually, this reminds me of Charles Barkley vs. Godzilla.

    In other words, this HAS to be made, since both Punisher/Archie and Barkley/Godzilla were buckets of awesome.