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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Turner Tells Shareholders To Expect a Difficult Year

ST. PETERSBURG -- This year will be a relatively difficult one for Turner Broadcasting Systems Inc., chairman Ted Turner has told the annual shareholders' meeting.


"The year 1994 is going to be a tough year for us, relatively speaking," he told the meeting in St. Petersburg's Marble Palace, the former home of the city's museum to Soviet state founder Vladimir Lenin.


The media group, whose operations include round-the-clock news service CNN International, made a surprise loss of 7 cents a share in the first quarter of this year, after a profit of 27 cents per share over the whole of 1993.


Turner gave no forecast for full-year 1994 earnings or for performance in the second quarter.


Officials declined to comment on recent media reports that the TBS board was poised to discuss a possible bid for U.S. television network and media group CBS Inc.


"Ted is on public record with statements about how he feels about television -- no comment," executive vice-president Terence McGuirk said after the meeting.


Turner said TBS's key events of 1993 were its acquisitions of New Line Cinema Corp and Castle Rock Entertainment. "It has been a very pleasant transition. We are very enthusiastic that this will be a long-term asset to us," he said.


Noting that TBS was moving towards its own production facilities, he said:it was his intention "to attempt to bypass network TV. This will improve our ratings over networks which are just running old films."


Turner, in St. Petersburg for the Goodwill Games sporting event, said TBS's involvement with the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer had cost it over $40 million in the first quarter.


The company also played a key role in the 1992 Winter Olympics.


But he added: "We should not really look at the Goodwill Games and the Olympics as losses. Cable operators give us $500 million a year in fees. But that they don't come every year is kind of nice."