Record core TV advertising, political and retransmission revenue drives record 1Q operating income of $27.7 million.
Nexstar 1Q Net Rev Up 19% to Record $134M
Nexstar Broadcasting Group today reported financial results for the first quarter ended March 31 that included a 19.3% gain in net revenue to $133.8 million, up from $112.2 million a year earlier.
That was a record, the company said, breaking it down as follows:
- Local revenue was up 9.5% to $65.6 million.
- National revenue grew 16.3% to $27.2 million.
- Retransmission consent money rose 47.6% to $35.1 million.
- Digital media revenue was down 3.4% to $6.3 million.
Income from operations was $27.7 million, an increase of 55.5%.
Perry A. Sook, Nexstar chairman, president and CEO, commented: “Nexstar’s strong operating and financial momentum continues in 2014 as reflected by our record first quarter net revenue, BCF, adjusted EBITDA and free cash flow. The 19.3% rise in first quarter net revenue again highlights the value of our long-term strategy to complete accretive acquisitions while evolving the traditional television broadcasting operating model into a diversified entity with high margin revenue streams. With strong core advertising trends, the cyclical return of political spending, our expanded digital media operations and visible retransmission revenue growth, we believe Nexstar is on track to generate record free cash flow throughout 2014.
“Reflecting growth in four of our top five, and seven of our top 10 ad categories, as well as a 17% year-over-year increase in new business development, first quarter core ad revenue rose 11.4%, inclusive of 9.5% first quarter growth in local spot revenue and 16.3% growth in national spot revenue. Nexstar’s gross revenue growth in the first quarter excluding political was a robust 16.5% while first quarter political revenue rose over five-fold compared to the same period last year and by 43.3% over comparable first quarter 2012 levels.
“Strong gains in our core television operations were complemented by significant double-digit growth in first quarter retransmission fee revenue which rose 31% on a quarterly sequential basis and 47.6% year-over-year to $35.1 million, which marks a record level of quarterly revenue from this source. With the renewal of retransmission consent agreements representing approximately 22.0% of our subscriber base in late 2013 we project highly visible and significant revenue growth from this source throughout the year.
“Digital media revenue declines were due to non-recurring revenue at Inergize related to contract buyouts in 2013, while station-level digital revenue grew by 18.4% year-over-year. Expected digital media revenue growth in 2014 will reflect our accretive acquisition in April 2014 of Internet Broadcasting Systems, a digital publishing platform and digital agency services provider that strengthens our position as a leading local technology and services provider for businesses.
“In total, retransmission fee and digital media revenue grew 36.7% year-over-year to $41.4 million and accounted for 30.9% of 2014 first quarter net revenue. By comparison, total first quarter 2013 retransmission fee and digital media revenue comprised 27.0% of net revenue and 22.3% of net revenue in the 2012 first quarter.”