Both radio and television posted revenue declines for Q4 at Spanish Broadcasting System. Radio performed better than TV, which is good news for SBS, in that its radio division is much larger than TV.
“Our fourth quarter results reflect the positive impact of our disciplined approach to managing our costs during the global recession, as we generated significantly improved cash flows from our operations for the fourth consecutive quarter. As we seek to capitalize on the early stages of the rebound in the advertising market, we believe the operating efficiencies in our new broadcast model will become increasingly evident, even as we prudently invest in our content and sales resources. Looking ahead, our radio, TV and online brands continue to grow, as we cross-promote our multi-platform media assets with both our advertisers and consumers. As the nation’s Hispanic population continues its rapid expansion, we believe we are well positioned to benefit given the strength of our diverse media platform and our leadership position in serving this increasingly influential and powerful audience,” said a statement from CEO Raul Alarcon, who no longer conducts quarterly Wall Street conference calls.
SBS by the numbers:
Radio net revenues for Q4 were down 9% to $31.7 million, while TV was down 27% to $4.3 million. In all, revenues were down 12% for SBS to $36 million.
“Our radio segment net revenue decreased due to lower local, special event and barter sales caused mainly by the decline in economic conditions. The decrease in local sales occurred in all of our markets. The decrease in special event sales of $1.0 million occurred primarily in our Puerto Rico and Miami markets. The decrease in barter sales occurred in all of our markets, with the exception of our Los Angeles market. Our television segment net revenue decreased $1.6 million or 27%, primarily due to a decrease in sponsorship revenue, local sales and barter sales,” the company said.
Operating income before depreciation, amortization and special charges shot up 159% to $10.8 million from $4.2 million a year earlier. That was largely due to SBS cutting station operating expenses by $10.8 million and corporate expenses by $700K.
As previously reported, SBS received an extension and faces a Nasdaq deadline of June 7 for its stock to return to compliance with the $1 minimum bid rule.