Retrans Fees Save The Quarter For Nexstar

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At first glance, the 2021 first quarter results for the nation’s largest owner of broadcast TV stations seems super: Net income rose by 26.3%. Adjusted EBITDA improved by 2.4% against tough comps tied to roughly $50 million fewer political ad dollars.


But, the big reveal for Nexstar Media Group is that its “Distribution Fee Revenue,” a.k.a. retransmission consent dollars, are far and away the greatest revenue driver — significantly surpassing core ad revenue, which slipped in Q1.

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