Reductions in staff and other expenses aren’t enough to offset lower ad revenue, including political and issue ad dollars.
Journal Communications Inc. today announced results for its third quarter ended Sept. 27, and revenue from its television stations decreased 24.1% to $24.5 million compared to $32.3 million in the same quarter one year ago.
Television political and issue advertising revenue was $500,000 million compared to $3.2 million. The operating results from television stations were essentially breakeven compared to an operating loss of $17 million, which included a $21.1 million non-cash impairment charge for television broadcast licenses.
Television operating expenses (including KNIN Boise, Idaho, acquired in April 2009 but excluding the non-cash impairment charge in 2008) were down 13.2% compared to last year, the company said, “due to the reduction in employee related costs and other cost reduction initiatives.”
As a whole, the company reported third quarter revenue of $105.1 million, down 22.9% compared to $136.3 million in the year-ago quarter.
“In the third quarter, we remained diligent about reducing costs and generating cash while operating in an ongoing difficult advertising environment,” said Steven J. Smith, chairman-CEO of Journal Communications. “We made additional progress on debt reduction by paying down another $6 million in the quarter. Year to date, Journal Communications has reduced its debt by almost $43 million.
“Although the advertising environment remains challenged, we did see some improvements in broadcast revenues as the quarter progressed.
“We expect to see modest improvement in advertising expenditures as we enter the fourth quarter, yet our focus on expense and debt reduction will continue.”