Univision Posts Big Profit Gain in Fourth Quarter

Proceeds from incentive auction expected to be $376M

Univision Communications, looking to rebound from viewer losses, reported strong financial results in the fourth quarter.

Net income was $108 million, up from $8.8 million a year ago.

Revenue rose 15% to $846.5 million. For all of 2016, revenue was up 6.4% to $3.04 billion.

Univision also announced that it expects to receive about $376 million in proceeds from the FCC spectrum auction in 2017.

“Our fourth quarter marked a strong finish to a very positive year for Univision where we achieved the highest revenue and Adjusted OIBDA in the history of our company, generated nearly $219 million in Net Income and reduced our net debt by $400 million while still investing approximately $160 million in strategic digital assets,” said CEO Randy Falco.

Univision, traditionally the dominant player in the Spanish-language TV market, saw its lead over rival Telemundo slip over the past three years. But the company is implementing a plan to work more closely with Televisa and other programming suppliers to create shows more engaging to the Hispanic audience in the U.S.

“Our investments to strengthen and diversify our content and portfolio of assets have helped us to build upon our position as the No. 1 network for U.S. Hispanics and significantly grow our reach. As we look ahead, we are optimistic that our increasingly diverse portfolio of leading media assets will position us to perform well in a rapidly changing media landscape,” Falco said.

Univision’s media networks group reported a 16% increase in adjusted operating income to $386 million in the quarter. Revenues were up 16.6%.

Ad revenue for the media networks group was up 9.3% to $474 million, boosted by political and advocacy advertising, which was up 232% to $23 million. Without the political ads, Univision’s media networks saw a 5.6% increase in ad revenue.

Univision’s non-advertising revenue, including subscriber fees and content licensing, was up 30.6% to $305 million.