Retransmission money and station acquisitions drive rev to $123 million in the company’s fiscal third quarter.
Meredith Corp.’s Local Media Group — which consists of 17 television stations reaching 11% of U.S. TV households — generated revenue of $123 million in its fiscal third quarter, an increase of 26% from the previous 3Q. Operating profit grew 18% to $31 million.
- Non-political advertising revenues grew 26% to $88 million. Results were led by newly acquired stations in Phoenix, St. Louis, Mobile-Pensacola and Springfield; and strong digital advertising revenue performance.
- Other revenues and operating expenses both increased, due primarily to growth in retransmission revenues from cable and satellite television operators, and programming fees paid to affiliated networks.
- EBITDA margin was 34%.
Most of Meredith’s retransmission agreements with cable and satellite operators are scheduled for renegotiation over the next two years. Meanwhile, most of Meredith’s network affiliation agreements are in place into fiscal 2017 and 2018.
Digital traffic was strong in fiscal 2013, driven by initiatives to improve content and search engine optimization, as well as continued focus on mobile apps aimed at news, sports and weather-related information.
“Our television expansion strategy is producing strong revenue and profit growth,” said Meredith Local Media Group President Paul Karpowicz. “We continue to make excellent progress integrating the four stations acquired in the last year. We are actively looking for opportunities to strategically add to our broadcasting portfolio, as well as drive growth by both expanding programming and growing rates.”