Belo boosts its dividend


Dunia ShiveYou read it here in December – Wells Fargo Securities’ analyst Marci Ryvicker’s prediction that Belo Corporation would soon increase its dividend. That is now reality.

Belo announced Thursday (3/1) that its Board of Directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of eight cents per share, representing a 60% increase over the company’s previous quarterly cash dividend rate of five cents per share. The dividend is payable on June 1, 2012, to shareholders of record on May 11, 2012.

The new annualized rate of 32 cents per share represents a dividend yield of 4.5% based on Wednesday’s (2/29) closing price of $7.17.

“This action demonstrates the confidence the Board and management have in the Company’s ability to continue its exceptional cash generation, and reflects our commitment to providing an attractive return to shareholders.  The Company also has the flexibility to pursue investments or acquisitions, repurchase shares opportunistically or make cash positive open market repurchases of its 2013 bonds,” said CEO Dunia Shive.

Belo noted that it currently has more than $100 million in cash and $887 million in fixed-rate debt securities, $175 million of which is due in May 2013.  The company has nothing drawn on its $200 million revolving credit facility that expires in August 2016.