No elections to speak of in 2007? That knocked Hearst-Argyle, owner of 26 television stations and a pair of radio stations, for a 30.9M loop. It says it was offset by improved ad sales, up 7% to 10.8M, but it was not enough to prevent an overall loss of 8% in total revenue to 216.6M. Comparing back to Q4 2005, however, the most-recent off-election year, Hearst said it was up 13%. It managed to monetize digital assets to the tune of 6.6M, a 25% increase, and brought in 5.5M in retransmission consent fees, an increase of 20%.
The company expects to ride the Olympics and the elections to big gains 2008 over 2007, but is concerned that continuing overriding economic problems may put a damper on results.