EARNINGS CALL

Disney+ To Add Advertising Supported Tier

CEO Bob Chapek said advertisers “have been asking for this for years” and predicted excitement over the Disney+ availabilities, which will be pitched in the upfront with ABC and the linear cable networks, along with other digital properties.

EARNINGS CALL

TelevisaUnivision: No Advertiser Hesitancy Over Inflation

CEO Wade Davis says the Spanish-language media group is “seeing huge strength across the board. Pharma is up 34%. Finance is up almost 50%. Retail is up 40%.”         

EARNINGS CALL

Nexstar Sees Ad Pacings Still Strong

Core advertising, political, distribution and digital all posted year-over-year gains. Overall, television advertising grew 8.3% versus Q1 of ’21, and core television advertising of $428 million was a first-quarter record and increased 4% over the prior year quarter.

QUARTERLY REPORT

Brady News Breaks In Fox Corp. Earnings Call

The NFL legend will join Fox Sports whenever he hangs up his cleats. The news came during the company’s call with analysts to report another growth quarter the company, with total revenues up 7% to $3.2 billion. Ad revenue grew 9% overall to $1.3 billion, led by stronger pricing and higher ratings at Fox News and continued growth at Tubi, the company’s ad-supported streaming service.

EARNINGS CALL

Gray TV Sees ‘Gargantuan Year’ In Political Ads

Gray Television Chairman-CEO Hilton Howell: “I think [2022] will likely rival, if not exceed, any previous presidential election.”

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Scripps Sees OTA Gaining From Inflation

Scripps CEO Adam Symson said that is one of the factors making this a good time for the company’s ad campaign for free, over-the air TV. “We really expect to take advantage of this moment when consumers are frustrated with the increases they’re seeing by subscription video-on-demand services. They’re frustrated by the content flood. And they’re experiencing a level of ‘plus fatigue.’”

Sinclair Sees Political Pushing Rates Up

COO and Broadcasting President Robert Weisbord tells analysts that “political is tracking above our expectations and we look forward to 2022 having the record mid-term election spend.”

EARNINGS CALL

Strong TV Helps Drive Streaming For Paramount

“Many of the cornerstones of our CBS lineup — fan favorites like Ghosts, NCIS and FBI — are also among the strongest performers in streaming. To date this season, CBS has been the source of 17 of the top 30 titles on Paramount+. And on Pluto TV, CBS content accounts for 10 of the top 30 series in the quarter,” Paramount Global President-CEO Bob Bakish told analysts today.

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Comcast Execs Proud As A Peacock

“Media revenues increased 36% to $6.9 billion, including Peacock revenue, which grew more than five times year-over-year to $472 million in the quarter,” said Comcast Corp. CFO Mike Cavanagh.

Warner Bros. Discovery Chief David Zaslav Vows Not To Overspend To Compete In Streaming Wars

Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav Tuesday said he doesn’t plan on getting into a streaming arms race as Hollywood’s big entertainment companies bolster their platforms to woo analysts. “I know we have the resources, but we can plan on being careful and judicious,” he said during the company’s conference with analysts after the 1Q earnings were released.

EARNINGS CALL

Univision Finished 2021 With More Growth

Wade Davis, CEO of the just-merged TelevisaUnivision, said 2021 was “the first time in more than 15 years that Univision has grown ad sales sequentially after a political year.”

EARNINGS CALL

Gray TV Boosts Political Revenue Target

Hilton Howell: “We are increasing our 2022 political revenue guidance by approximately 10% from the $525 million announced on our November 2021 earnings call, to $575 million today. This … represents a whopping 55% increase over the $372 million of political revenue that we achieved on a combined historical basis in the last mid-term election year of 2018.”

EARNINGS CALL

Core Advertising Recovery Continues For Scripps

Brian Lawlor: “We reached our 2019 core advertising performance in Q4 for the second quarter in a row, despite the headwinds of automotive. In fact, our forecast for the first quarter is that we’ll be up in results for five consecutive quarters of core advertising growth for Scripps, which is remarkable since it includes automotive.”

EARNINGS CALL

Sinclair Spells Out Cyber Attack Costs

Sinclair President-CEO Chris Ripley said the unrecoverable net loss from last year’s ransomware attack is estimated at $24 million. Looking forward, however, the CEO declared 2022 to be looking strong for advertising, with record spending expected for the mid-term election year aided by continued strength in the services and sports betting categories and a slowly recovering auto sector.

EARNINGS CALL

Nexstar Chief Unfazed By Rising Inflation

Chairman-CEO Perry Sook: “Historically, inflation has been a friend to our business because it gives us some ability, or cover, for pricing power, pricing increases.” While auto advertising continues to be challenged, Nexstar President-COO Tom Carter reported that other categories have picked up the slack.

EARNINGS CALL

Sports Driving Ad Growth For Disney

CEO Bob Chapek: Live sports are the “the most powerful draw on TV.” Lower broadcast operating income, he said, was affected by an adverse comparison to prior-year political advertising revenue at the owned television stations.

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Local TV Advertising ‘Fully Recovered’ At Fox Corp.

Ad revenues for the TV segment rose 6% to $649 million, while the cable nets rose 3% to $454 million. Affiliate revenues (retrans and reverse comp) grew 10% to $649 million for TV and affiliate fees rose 12% to $454 million for cable.

EARNINGS CALL

NBCU TV, Movie Businesses To Fund Peacock Growth

The number of monthly users of the streaming service — 24.5 million active accounts at the end of 2021 — is already at 75% of the company’s original projection for 2024, including 9 million who are paying for either limited commercials or no commercials. Thus, spending is being ramped up for even faster growth, with profits from the rest of NBCUniversal easily covering a few more years of losses at Peacock.

EARNINGS CALL

Scripps Targets New Advertisers To Grow Core

“In addition to a strong ad market, our core revenue was being bolstered by our success capturing new-to-TV advertisers,” Local Media President Brian Lawlor told analysts this morning. “In this quarter we again had over 1,000 new-to-TV businesses advertising, who have been developed by our local sellers over the pandemic. Across our footprint, we are focused on maintaining a strong and consistent effort to bring new business to local television.”

EARNINGS CALL

Univision Grew Auto Advertising Last Quarter

CEO Wade Davis: “We actually grew the auto category” low- to mid-single-digits, “which is pretty remarkable relative to some of the performance of our peers.”

EARNINGS CALL

Streaming Is ViacomCBS’s Focus For Wall Street

Those businesses will become one of three stand-alone reporting segments, along with traditional television (broadcast and cable) and film.

EARNINGS CALL

Tegna Weighs Bids As It Reports Record Results

Execs keep mum on acquisition offers while waxing optimistic about the company’s revenue potential going forward.

EARNINGS CALL

Local Ad Trends Positive For Fox Corp.

Said CFO Steve Tomsic: “At the Fox Television Stations we continued to observe a meaningful rebound in the base market, with our core ad revenue up high single-digits, which partially offset the absence of historic political advertising revenues that we experienced last year.”

EARNINGS CALL

Sinclair Expects Core Ad Gain This Quarter

EVP-CFO Lucy Rutishauser: “Compared to fourth quarter pro forma 2019, media revenues [are trending to be] up 7% to 9%. Excluding the impact of political ad revenue, fourth quarter core advertising is expected to be up a low double-digit percent versus Q4 of last year and up by a low single-digit percent versus Q4 of 2019.”

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Nexstar’s Ad Demand Strong Despite Supply Chain Disruptions

“In Q3 and in Q4, 14 of the top 25 categories are up,” said Nexstar President-COO Tom Carter. “Core television advertising, reflecting accelerated rebound demand for our premium local and national marketing solutions, led to a 13.3% year-over-year increase in revenue for this segment.”

EARNINGS CALL

Olympics, Theme Park Rebound Drive NBCU Growth

Media revenues for NBCU were up 47.5% to $6.8 billion. Comcast CFO Mike Cavanagh noted that included approximately $1.8 billion attributed to the Tokyo Olympics. But excluding the Olympics, revenues were still up 9.2%, driven by higher distribution and advertising revenue.

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ABC O&Os Outpace Network

Disney CFO Christine McCarthy: “Lower results from the ABC Television Network were only partially offset by growth at our owned television stations.” She also noted that advertising demand is shifting to nonlinear platforms. “We came out of a very strong upfront, but we had about 40% of the total upfront dollars into streaming and digital.”

EARNINGS CALL

TV Strong As Meredith Prepares To Say Goodbye

Not surprisingly, due to the pending TV station group sale to Gray, questions from Wall Street analysts focused almost exclusively on the other business segments, but what little broadcasting news there was, was good. “We delivered 50% growth in non-political spot advertising revenues, driven by the professional services, automotive and gaming categories. We also benefited from continued growth in retransmission revenues,” Meredith President-CEO Tom Harty said.

EARNINGS CALL

Ad Rebound In High Gear At Tegna

“Not surprisingly, all categories were up over last year, including auto; services; retail; health care; home improvement; entertainment & gambling; insurance, banking & finance; packaged goods; and education,” EVP-CFO Victoria Harker said in the quarterly conference call. “Even categories that continued to face some pressure this quarter — including entertainment, travel & tourism — were up substantially compared to the second quarter of last year.”

EARNINGS CALL

E.W. Scripps Sees Surge In Core Advertising

E.W. Scripps said Friday that it topped its guidance with same-station advertising up 48% and services seeing a 35% year-to-year spending jump, leading all other categories.

EARNINGS CALL

Gray TV Core Returning To 2019 Level

Gray President-Co-CEO Pat LaPlatney: “The fact that other categories — especially legal, home improvement, financial, health and gambling — effectively backfilled a big hole left by the challenged auto advertisers, illustrates the underlying strength of our local television stations and the revenue diversification that has taken place over the last few years.”

EARNINGS CALL

Return Of Sports Scores Big For ViacomCBS

Elaborating on second quarter advertising growth, CFO Naveen Chopra said ViacomCBS benefitted from “both the return of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament well as timing shifts for this year’s professional golf tournaments.”

EARNINGS CALL

TV Ad Growth Powers Fox Corp.

Executive Chairman-CEO Lachlan Murdoch hailed an “absolutely historic” upfront for the Fox Network and its cable and digital siblings, and then focused on the ad rebound already underway. “All of our categories are up very strongly, with the exception of two, which are auto and telecom,” he noted, referring to the company’s local station business.

EARNINGS CALL

Other Categories Filling Auto Gap For Sinclair

CFO Lucy Rutishauser: “Solid growth in our largest category, services, as well as strength in the sports betting and pharmaceutical categories offset much” of the auto decrease.

EARNINGS CALL

All Top 10 Ad Categories Gain For Nexstar

“Looking ahead, we’re encouraged by the overall acceleration in economic activity and the improved trajectory of ad spending across our footprint as market conditions continue to improve,” Chairman-CEO Perry Sook told analysts this morning.

EARNINGS CALL

Olympics To Be Profitable For NBCU

NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell: “So, net-net, with all this bad luck, we’re going to be profitable on the Olympics, which we’re very happy with. We’re very happy with the product. If you watch every night, you’ll see that we use this as a firehose to promote everything else that we’re doing at the company.”

EARNINGS CALL

Tegna Sees All Categories Pacing Up In 2Q

EVP-CFO Victoria Harker said: “We continue to see recovery in non-political advertising in many categories,” including auto services, health care, home improvement, entertainment, gambling, insurance, banking and finance, packaged goods and education.

EARNINGS CALL

ViacomCBS Gung-Ho On Streaming Growth

Looking at the current quarter, CFO Naveen Chopra told analysts to expect streaming subscription revenue and streaming advertising revenue to accelerate from the first quarter.

EARNINGS CALL

Fox Corp. Sees Sunday NFL As Best Package

“The Sunday NFC package has been the most watched NFL package for the past 16 years. Our NFC coverage is an important foundation for the Fox Network and strategically aligns with our local stations, where we own and operate the Fox affiliate in 14 of the 16 NFC markets,” Fox CEO Lachlan Murdoch told analysts.

EARNINGS CALL

Core Beating Expectations For Sinclair

EVP-CFO Lucy Rutishauser: “If you adjust for the impact of the Super Bowl moving this year to CBS from Fox last year, core advertising results for the first quarter would have been up low-single-digits compared to a year ago,” she told analysts. President-CEO Chris Ripley added: “We’ve been very, very happy with what we’ve seen on [2Q] core advertising. It’s been a great bounce back for the economy overall.”