comScore Cash Flow Dropped to $10.8M in Q1 - Broadcasting & Cable

comScore Cash Flow Dropped to $10.8M in Q1

Company hopes to complete audit this summer
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comScore, which has been unable to file formal financial reports since last year because of questions about some accounting practices, says its first-quarter cash flow fell to $10.8 million from $12.5 million a year ago.

The company said it was on schedule with the re-audit of its financial reports and hoped to complete the audit this summer. The company would then aim to regain SEC compliance and resume regular financial reports. Once it issues financial reports and earning guidance, it expects to be re-listed on either the New York Stock Exchange or Nasdaq.

Legal and other costs incurred in connection with the re-audit were $12.8 million.

Related: Charter, comScore Expand Data Usage Relationship

On a conference call updating investors on the company's condition, CEO Gian Fulgoni said, "We're seeing both focus and momentum return to our business." He said the company was working on product development on measuring TV and digital audiences.

One syndicated product based on its Total Home Panel, which measures media consumption on internet connected devices, is called OTT Intelligence. It will measure over-the-top content providers including Netflix, Amazon, Hulu and YouTube.

Subscribers to OTT Intelligence will receive data on household reach, audiences size, household demographics and usage metrics. Those usage metrics at first will cover total usage of the services. comScore is working on being able to develop those metrics for individual shows on those platforms.

Related: comScore Announces New OTT Measurement Service

The Total Home Panel is also generating a Connected Home measurement product that looks at device penetration of computers, mobile devices, game consoles, smart TV, streaming devices and other internet of things gadgets. It will provide data on device penetration, usage frequency, engagement time, household demographics, manufacturer and operating system market share and cross-device activity.

comScore had previously announced that it would be providing viewability measurement for free. It added that its online measurement service will also be able to provide content evaluations, telling marketers whether a site they are advertising on has relevant content, and more importantly, whether those sites have brand-safe content, something that’s increasing important to advertisers.

On the call, Fulgoni was asked if comScore finaniclal issues were affecting uptake of the commpany's new products.

Related: ‘Free’ Strategy Could Boost comScore Vs. Nielsen, Says Analyst

“Certainly in 2016, the business was disrupted, both the commercial end of its and the product development end of it. But I am confident that as we got to the end of the year, we got it back into focus,” Fulgoni said.

Fulgoni said that during the past year, comScore had been investing in data and that the company expected to begin generating incremental revenues in the second half of the year.

comScore’s digital ratings service, validated Campaign Essentials faced competitive challenges because it didn’t have a relationship with Facebook and Nielsen did. comScore recently made a deal with Facebook and that should help make vCE more competitive.

The company has also faced difficulties getting its software incorporated into some mobile apps, but that’s been difficult for all measurement companies, Fulgoni said.

“There are challenges sure, but I’m optimistic that we have our finger on the pulse of what’s needed and we’ve already made significant progress. We have a few more things to complete there.”

(Photo via 
Pictures of Money's FlickrImage taken on Sept. 9, 2016 and used per Creative Commons 2.0 license. The photo was cropped to fit 3x4 aspect ratio.)

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