Clear Channel begins to level out in Q4 2009


Broadcast revenues were down in 2009. There are no two ways about it. Clear Channel still brought in a lot of cash for the year — $5.6B – but that was down 17% compared to 2008. The good news is that its loss in Q4 was only 6%, to $1.5B over the same quarter a year prior.

Digging into the numbers a little, radio revenue declined 10% in Q4 to $712M, and dropped 17% for the full year, to $2.736B. Meanwhile, the company cut radio-related expenses, by 20% in Q4 and by 14% for the full year.

Mark Mays, President and CEO of CC Media Holdings, commented: “We began to see encouraging trends in the global advertising environment during the fourth quarter, as our overall revenues demonstrated sequential improvement in the final three months of the year.”

Mays added: “During the past year, we have implemented a concerted plan to achieve significant cost efficiencies across our operations. We have also strengthened our management team and sales organization and made considerable progress in developing our content distribution and advertising capabilities. These efforts will continue in 2010 as we seek to maximize our performance. We have a world-leading platform in the out-of-home media market, which enables us to deliver what we believe is an exceptional value proposition to advertisers. As we drive revenue growth across our operations, we believe we will increasingly benefit from our improved operating leverage, resulting in increased returns for our shareholders.”