Fisher TV Revenue Slides 26%

Times are tough but "the worst may be behind us"

Fisher Communications reported television revenue of $22.7 million for the second quarter, a 26% plummet from the same quarter a year ago. Fisher attributed the decrease to lower advertising revenue: automotive was down 58% in the quarter, retail fell 25%, and professional services slid 26%.

Second quarter revenue decreases around 20% have been the norm for broadcasters, making Fisher's earnings a bit harsher than most.

Fisher, with 13 full-power stations, reported television broadcast cash flow of $1.1 million in the quarter, down from $9.1 million in the second quarter of 2008.
"Our financial performance continues to be affected by the overall weakness in the economy and its impact on our clients' advertising budgets," said Fisher President/CEO Colleen Brown. "While we expect that our advertising and business partners will remain cautious until the economic recovery begins, we believe we are seeing signs that the worst may be behind us, including an improvement in TV ad pacing. It is too early to make definitive predictions, but these are positive indications that we will be closely monitoring for the remainder of the year.
"We are pleased to have completed our key cable retransmission agreements, gaining some recognition for the value of our stations, and to have settled our dispute with DISH Network," Brown continued. "In this challenging economic environment, we continue to seek new opportunities to drive incremental revenue by expanding our broadcast to broadband strategy. We also remain focused on improving our operational performance and effectively managing our cost structure."