Led by its Philadelphia cluster, Beasley Broadcast Group posted a 5.5% gain in Q1 revenues to $23.1 million. That translated to a 25.8% increase in station operating income (SOI), which jumped to $7.6 million.
On a same station basis, Q1 revenues were up 6% and SOI gained 24.8%.
CFO Caroline Beasley told analysts and investors that revenues were up for the quarter in nine of the company’s 11 market clusters. For the five markets that report to Miller Kaplan, Beasley grew revenues 9%, while the markets as a group were up only 2.14%.
The Philadelphia market was up 5.4%, but Beasley’s cluster grew revenues 16.8%, including “very strong” national revenue growth. While the Miami market was down 1.2%, Beasley’s cluster was up 6.8% on a same station basis (excluding a deliberately jettisoned sports contract last year). Beasley’s clusters also outperformed in Las Vegas and Ft. Myers, FL, but underperformed in the Augusta, GA market.
In the Q&A period with analysts, President Bruce Beasley said Beasley Broadcast Group has not added any inventory – and doesn’t intend to do so, either – so the growth is all being driven by selling the inventory at better rates. That rate growth, he noted, is being driven by adding new advertisers.
Like so many other broadcasters, Beasley is enjoying a resurgence of automotive advertisers. Caroline Beasley reported that auto was up 40% in Q1.