With March barely over, LIN TV has rushed to inform Wall Street of good news: Q1 revenues shot up 23% over a year ago. Automotive was a big part, gaining 54%.
“We are pleased to see signs of an economic recovery. The preliminary first quarter results show positive momentum and pacing for the second quarter of 2010 is currently greater than 20% ahead of where we were last year at this time,” said a statement from CEO Vince Sadusky.
LIN won’t issue its full results and conduct a conference call with Wall Street analysts until April 22nd, but it provided quite a bit of detail in its preliminary report.
Net revenues for Q1 were up 23% to $91.8 million. Core spot sales, excluding political, rose 17% to $84.3 million. Within that was $19.3 million of auto advertising, up 54% from a year earlier.
Political revenues were almost nonexistent a year ago in Q1, only $500K, but shot up to $3.4 million this year.
Digital revenues, which LIN characterizes as Internet ad revenues and retransmission consent fees, jumped 47% to $13.2 million.
RBR-TVBR observation: Double digit gains are always good news. It looks like Q1 was picking up steam at the end, finishing up even a little ahead of the 20% pacing that the company indicated in early March.