Scripps Q2 TV Revenue Up 52%
Last year's McGraw-Hill broadcast division acquisition paces Scripps to booming numbers
By Michael Malone -- Broadcasting & Cable, 8/7/2012 10:02:26 AM
The quarter included revenue from the former McGraw-Hill stations in four markets that were acquired on Dec. 30, 2011. Excluding the new stations from the 2012 performance, consolidated revenues increased 3.3%.
Political advertising on the Scripps stations was $11.2 million in the quarter. Local advertising grew 32% and national gained 40%. Revenue from retransmission consent more than doubled year over year to $7.8 million as a result of new agreements with cable operators negotiated in 2011.
Same-station retransmission revenue increased 41% to $5.4 million. Stations' digital revenue doubled to $3.5 million in the quarter.
Overall, Scripps reported $217 million in second quarter revenue, up 19% over the same quarter last year. Operating income in the quarter was $14.4 million, compared with an operating loss of $2.2 million in the year-ago quarter.
"We had a promising second quarter, setting us up for good performance in the second half of the year," said Rich Boehne, Scripps president and CEO. "A series of decisions and investments made in recent years prepared us to capitalize on the early surge of political advertising, and investments in local news content, more relevant syndicated shows and digital products have created great environments for increased revenue.
"Our newly consolidated digital team is beginning to pump out high-quality products and services for both our TV and newspaper markets," he added. "Despite these investments in an aggressive digital rollout, the company's total expenses, on an apples-to-apples basis, were down in the second quarter. As a result, revenue growth fell to the bottom line and we delivered a substantial increase in cash flow."
Things are tougher on the newspaper side, where revenue was $97 million, down 4.7% from the second quarter of 2011. "In our newspaper markets, revenue headwinds persist," said Boehne, "but we're partially offsetting those challenges with expense reductions and racing to restructure for stability and growth as an enterprise that serves both print and digital consumers and advertisers with results that are unmatched in the local market."
Scripps forecasts third quarter television revenue being up 70%, and 30% when excluding the new acquisitions.
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