TV station revenue is down 22% due to “sharply lower advertising demand” and revenue from its syndicated strip The Daily Buzz dips 4%.
On Thursday afternoon Acme Communications announced its financial results for the first quarter ended March 31. Its net revenues from continuing operations decreased 20% to $6.5 million for the first quarter compared to net revenues of $8.2 million in the first quarter of 2008.
Acme said the decrease “was driven by sharply lower advertising demand resulting in a 22% decrease in net revenues at our television stations and a 4% revenue decrease at [syndicated show] The Daily Buzz.”
Total operating costs decreased 13% to $7.8 million for the first quarter compared to $9.0 million for the first quarter of 2008 — driven mainly by lower program amortization and reduced promotion and compensation expense reflecting the company’s efforts to reduce all discretionary costs in the face of a severe economic downturn.
Station cash-based operating expenses decreased 11%, principally on lower variable-based expenses. Resulting broadcast cash flow for the quarter was negative $374,000 compared to $425,000 for the first quarter of 2008.
Its loss from continuing operations of $1.6 million for the first quarter of 2009 was essentially unchanged from the first quarter of 2008.
Commenting on the quarter’s results, Jamie Kellner, Acme’s chairman-CEO, said: “We are clearly operating in a very challenging marketplace and we are doing everything prudently possible to reduce costs to help minimize the adverse impact this recession is having on our financial performance. On a positive note, despite intense pressure from our more established and higher-rated in-market competitors, we once again delivered a year-over-year increase in our group share of non-political advertising revenues in our markets.”