Graham Holdings Broadcast Revenue Up 20%

Political ads, retrans give Graham robust fourth quarter
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Graham Media Group reported fourth quarter broadcast revenue of $102.4 million, up 20% over the previous year's quarter, while operating income grew 24% to $54.4 million. The growth is due to a $15.4 million increase in political advertising revenue and $4.6 million in increased retransmission revenues.

In November 2014, the broadcasting division, which includes WDIV Detroit and KPRC Houston, acquired tech platform SocialNewsDesk.

Parent company Graham Holdings reported fourth quarter revenue of $925.3 million, up 7% from the fourth quarter in 2013. While revenues increased at the television broadcasting division and in other businesses, they were flat at the education division and lower at the cable division. Graham reported operating income of $146.2 million in the fourth quarter, compared to $97.4 million in 2013.

Fourth quarter cable revenue totaled $197.7 million, a 1% decline from fourth quarter 2013 revenue. The division continues its focus on higher margin businesses, namely high-speed data and business sales. Residential high-speed data revenue increased 5.3% in 2014 on 2.5% customer growth, and business sales increased 18.5% on a 14.9% increase in business high-speed data customers.

Graham's fourth quarter education division revenue totaled $551.4 million.

On June 30, 2014, Graham Holdings and Berkshire Hathaway Inc. completed a transaction in which Berkshire acquired, among other things, WPLG Miami. In November 2014, the company announced that its board authorized management to proceed with plans for the complete separation of Cable ONE, Inc., from Graham Holdings, expected to be completed later this year

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