EARNINGS : 'Dreams' Come True for MCA

Times Staff Writer

Sparked by the domestic box-office performance of "Field of Dreams" and "K-9," MCA Inc. on Thursday reported a record $42 million in profit for the second quarter. By comparison, the company earned $8 million in the same quarter last year.

MCA, the parent of Universal Pictures, said its $861.4 million in revenue for the three months ended June 30 also was its highest ever for a second quarter. The figure for the same period of 1988 was $643.6 million.

"Field of Dreams" has grossed more than $55 million at the box office since it opened in April. "K-9," no longer in release, took in nearly $40 million by early this month. Filmed operations also benefited from the foreign release of the 1988 blockbuster "Twins," as well as from pay television and home video revenue on that picture.

Pretax operating income of $59.4 million for MCA's filmed entertainment division overshadowed figures for the company's other operations.

However, the music entertainment unit chalked up $15.5 million in operating income, also a record for a second quarter and up 51% from the previous year's period. The results were paced by hit albums recorded by Fine Young Cannibals, Bobby Brown and Tom Petty, which earlier this month held the top three spots on Billboard magazine's "Top Pop" album chart.

Also, the broadcasting and cable division contributed $14.7 million in operating income. The company credited improved results of both station WWOR-TV and USA Network.

Among the losers were retail and mail order operations, which suffered an increased seasonal operating loss of $6 million. Also, toy products cut its operating loss sharply to $2.2 million from $33.8 million a year earlier.

Operating income from book publishing dropped to $4.9 million from $5.6 million. Another $9.2 million in income was recorded for other operations, down from $10.1 million in the same 1988 period.

Corporate general expenses increased to $7.7 million from $5.1 million, and interest expense increased to $21.8 million from $18.9 million. The company reported $820,000 in income from investments, compared to a loss of $12.3 million a year earlier, when MCA wrote down its stake in Coleco Industries preferred stock.

For the six-month period, MCA reported that net income rose to $69.3 million from $34.9 million, and revenues rose to $1.6 billion from $1.25 billion.

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