Unimpressive Q1 for Fisher Communications


Fisher CommunicationsA revenue drop would be worse, obviously, but excluding revenues from recently sold Fisher Plaza, revenues for Fisher Communications were flat in Q1. Television was flat and radio was down 3%.

Consolidated revenue, including Fisher Plaza, dropped 10% to $33.9 million. Broadcast cash flow (obviously not impacted by the former real estate holding) increased 25% to $6.2 million, which was attributed to cost management. Adjusted EBITDA tripled to $1.5 million. Fisher’s net loss was $1.9 million, or 21 cents per share, compared to $1.7 million, or 20 cents per share, a year earlier.

TV net revenue was flat at $29.2 million. Retransmission consent revenue was up 8% to $3.6 million. Core advertising, excluding political, was down 2% to $22.2 million. Political shot up 490% to $519K. Developing media (including Internet) gained 9% to $1.3 million. So net revenue was up $58K to $29.2 million.

Radio revenues declined 3% to $4.7 million. Core advertising was down 3% to $4.5 million, while political gained 21% to $40K.

“Through the strength of our broadcast stations and innovative digital platforms, Fisher is able to expand its demographic reach and deliver its valuable news, information and content to multiple screens. We believe Fisher remains well positioned for strong station performance and audience share growth. These are the fundamentals that differentiate Fisher from its competitors and will continue to make the Company a leader in redefining the future of local media,” said Fisher CEO Colleen Brown in a statement before her quarterly conference call with analysts.

“Our first quarter results reflect a soft national marketplace. Despite this, our stations continued to outperform the market in both audience share and revenue growth during the quarter, which are especially important as political spending begins its expected acceleration as we get closer to the fall elections. We believe the quality of our programming, the popularity of our award winning journalism teams and the growth of our developing media program provides Fisher a solid foundation to deliver long-term growth,” added Brown.