The Meredith Corporation board of directors approved a 50% increase in the company’s cash dividend on its common stock. The board also authorized a new $100 million stock buyback plan.
The quarterly dividend will rise to 38 and a quarter cents per share (from the previous 25 and a half cents) and be payable December 15th to shareholders of record on November 30th.
Meredith noted in its announcement that based on the Tuesday (10/25) closing stock price of $24.89 the yield on its stock is approximately 6.1% — at the top of its peer group and in the top 2% of all companies in the S&P 500.
“A hallmark of Meredith’s business model and financial profile is our ability to consistently generate substantial free cash flow by leveraging the strength of our leading brands,” said Meredith Chairman and CEO Stephen Lacy. “This enables us to create tangible shareholder value by returning cash to investors and executing strategic investments. Our new financial strategy – built on commitment to Total Shareholder Return (TSR) and prudent capital stewardship – reaffirms this commitment to our shareholders.”
As for the stock buyback, Lacy said the company will use the authorization to repurchase shares “when it provides strong value for shareholders.”