Meredith Corp. income up 14% in 2Q

Meredith Corp. reported that second quarter earnings per share increased 12% to $0.58 from $0.52 in the prior-year. Income from operations grew 14 percent to $55.5 million and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) rose 17 percent to $67 million.

Revenues rose 31% to $386 million in the second quarter and advertising revenues increased 32 percent to $232.1 million. On a comparable basis (excluding Parents, Family Circle, Fitness, Child and Ser Padres magazines, which were acquired on July 1, 2005), Meredith’s revenues grew 4% to $305.4 million and advertising revenues rose 5% to $185.2 million.

“We are extremely pleased to report another strong quarter,” stated William T. Kerr, Meredith’s chairman and CEO. “We have produced double-digit earnings per share growth in 14 of the last 15 quarters.”

For the first six months of fiscal 2006, earnings per share increased 12% to $1.10. Income from operations grew 15% to $106.7 million and EBITDA grew 18% to $129.6 million. Revenues increased 33% to $776.2 million and advertising revenues grew 30% to $465.4 million. On a comparable basis, the company’s revenues increased 5% to $612.3 million and advertising revenues rose 3% to $368.6 million.

Meredith’s second quarter and first half results were positively impacted by significant magazine advertising gains; the acquisition of the new magazines, which were modestly accretive; and outstanding online advertising and profit growth. “Additionally, our book and integrated marketing businesses continued to perform well,” said Kerr. “In broadcasting, we improved late news audience share at most of our television stations and produced strong non- political advertising revenue growth, which partially offset the cyclical decline in political advertising.”

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