Beasley battling tough real estate markets


Q2 revenues fell 10.9% to $31 million for Beasley Broadcast Group, with two markets hard hit by the real estate meltdown taking a big chunk of the blame – Las Vegas and Ft. Myers-Naples. But Beasley’s cluster outperformed in Philadelphia and President Bruce Beasley had some mostly nice things to say about how Arbitron is handling PPM there.

Beasley said Arbitron is doing a good job with its initiative to boost the 25-34 sample in Philly, which is good for his younger-skewing stations, but he also noted that Country WXTU-FM, which has an older audience, went down in the rankers as a result. “They’ve done a pretty good job. I think they have a long way to go,” Beasley said. In his view, it shows that when Arbitron makes a change to PPM it is seen through the industry, so radio has to make sure that Arbitron is making the right changes.

Beasley Broadcast Group reported that Q2 revenues declined 10.9% to $31 million and station operating income income fell 10.3% to $9.3 million. CFO Caroline Beasley attributed the revenue decline to four factors: 25% due to the soft Las Vegas Market; 25% due to the soft Ft. Myers market; 25% from no longer having the Florida Marlins in Miami; and 25% from revenue declines in the Coastal Carolina and Miami markets.

Philly was the bright spot, up 4% as the market declined 4.5%. Miami was down 15%, but would have been down only 5% excluding the Marlins impact, while the market was down 11.4%. But Las Vegas dropped 23%, worse than the market decline of 13%. And Ft. Myers was off 26% against a market down 20%.

“It’s a challenging time, not only on media, but in the economy at large,” said Bruce Beasley. Although it’s not a Miller Kaplan market for comparisons, he noted that Augusta was also up for the company in Q2.

The company is not giving any guidance for Q3 except that it expects to be in line with its markets, with the following exceptions: a 3% impact from the Marlins and continuing challenges in Las Vegas, Ft. Myers and Miami, which account for 60% of the company’s revenues.