World Wrestling Profit Boosted by Pay-Per-View

World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE) Wednesday posted a better-than-expected rise in quarterly profit, helped by revenue from pay-per-view sporting events (search).

Shares rose as much as 10 percent after the Stamford, Conn.-based promoter of wrestling events featuring sports entertainers with names like "The Undertaker," said it earned $10.9 million, or 16 cents a share, up from $8.8 million, or 13 cents a share, a year earlier.

Sales for the fiscal third quarter rose to $82.7 million from $79.1 million a year earlier.

Results beat the average forecasts compiled by Reuters Estimates, which saw profit at 11 cents a share on revenue of $81.3 million,

"Investors were impressed with the international operations in particular and the revenue opportunities that are coming from subscription video on demand," said Jeffries & Co. analyst Robert Routh, who owns shares in the stock.

The company expects its 2005 profit to be in a range of 49 cents to 51 cents a share, compared with revenue to be in a range of $345 million to $355 million.

This would imply a fourth quarter profit forecast of 16 cents to 18 cents a share, on revenue of $96.9 million to $106.9 million.

The average Reuters fourth-quarter profit estimate was 20 cents a share, on revenue of $107.7 million.

Shares rose 89 cents, or 7.7 percent, to $12.41 on the New York Stock Exchange (search).