Thanks to the acquisition of 16 new TV stations in 2002, Atlanta-based Gray
Television Inc. posted a 107 percent increase in broadcasting revenue for the first
quarter of 2003 to $52.6 million, with those new stations accounting for $27.5
million of that total.
Without the new acquisitions, however, broadcasting revenue was up just 1
percent, with a 2 percent boost in local ad revenue largely offset by a 3
percent drop in national revenue, which the company attributed in part to the
impact of the Iraq war, as well as to the absence of a shade under $400,000 in
political ad revenue.
The company's seven NBC affiliates also had Olympic Games coverage in first-quarter
2002 to boost those numbers.
Gray said it spent $2 million in the first quarter on digital broadcasting --
16 of its 29 stations are broadcasting digital signals -- and it anticipates
spending a total of $12 million this year and another $10.5 million next year.
The company has received various Federal Communications Commission extensions as it
works to bring the rest of its group up to speed.