TV solid for Gannett in non-election year


TV revenues were up for Gannett in Q2 as newspaper revenues – the company’s biggest segment – fell again. The big growth came only in the digital segment, which is the smallest unit.

Companywide, operating revenues were down 2.2% in Q2 to $1.33 billion. Net income dropped 22.5% to $151.5 million. Earnings per share declined to 62 cents from 73 cents a year ago.

Broadcasting revenues, including the Captivate video service, were up 0.2% to $184.4 million. For the TV station group alone, revenues rose to $177.7 million from $177.5 million a year ago. That was despite the lack of $8.8 million in political advertising. Adjusted for the political swing, the company said TV revenues were up 5.4%. Retransmission consent fees jumped 23.7% to $19.4 million.

Looking at Q3, Gannett officials advised that TV revenues are expected to be down in the mid-single digits against a Q3 of 2010 that included $21.3 million in political revenues. Excluding political, revenues are expected to be up in the mid-single digits.

The world’s largest newspaper company had another down quarter on the print side. Publishing revenues declined 4.9% to $977.1 million, with ad revenues down 6.5% to $646.9 million. US newspaper ad revenues were down 7.2%, with retail down 5.6%, national 9.8% and classified 8.5%.

Growth came in the digital segment, with revenues up 126% to $173.4 million. That was primarily attributed to the company’s stake in CareerBuilder. Operating cash flow for the digital segment jumped 23.6% to $43.8 million.

Despite the down quarter, Gannett announced a dividend increase and a resumption of its stock buyback program.