Traditional advertising registered a nice increase for television group Media General, and political advertising exploded, resulting in huge gains in revenue and profits. Expenses increased, too, but partly for the good reason that more commissions were paid to successful sales staffers.
The company had lots of good numbers to share with the investing public.
* Total revenues up 40% to $108.7M from $77.9M
* Local gross sales up 5.3% to $50.7M
* National gross sales up 1.4% to $25.2M
* $30M in income from political
* Retransmission fees up 84.3% to $9.9M
* Digital up 18.8% to $2.7M
Media General President/CEO George L. Mahoney said, “Media General had an exceptional fourth quarter, marked by 40% revenue growth. Record Political advertising was $30 million. Core Local and National advertising revenues, excluding Political, increased 4%. Media General was particularly well positioned to maximize Political advertising opportunities, with six of our stations located in four of the key battleground states. Broadcast cash flow in the fourth quarter was $50.4 million, with a margin of 46%.”
The company, which shed all of its newspapers, announced that it is also shedding the traditional newspaper practice of ending its practice on the last Sunday of December, shifting to the more typical January 1 to December 31 period.