It was a good news/bad news third quarter for Radio One, the Washington, DC-based African American media specialist.
The company released its Q3 results before the opening bell on Wall Street Thursday, and its net revenue dipped 4.3%, from $115.9 million to $110.9 million.
Every segment saw a dip — except for political advertising.
However, as RBR + TVBR has reported, the political windfall for media companies in the 2016 election has not come.
For Radio One, political dollars grew from $413,000 to $477,000.
It didn’t help the company’s radio segment, which saw growth in Charlotte, Richmond, and its home DC market but experienced a 6.2% net revenue slide, from $55.5 million to $52.5 million.
Columbus, Ohio; Detroit; Philadelphia; and Houston experienced the most significant declines.
Cable television affiliate fees were up slightly, moving from $25.5 million to $25.8 million. But, cable TV advertising dropped from $22.1 million to $20.8 million.
How’s the debt?
As of September 30, Radio One had total debt (net of cash balances and original issue discount) of approximately $933.6 million.
NET LOSS NARROWS IN Q3
Despite the revenue decline, Radio One narrowed its net loss in the quarter.
The company saw consolidated net loss attributable to common shareholders of $423,000 (1 cent) — a big improvement from a $18.1 million loss (-38 cents) in the year-ago period.
Operating income grew from $7 million to $24.5 million, as its operating expenses shrunk from $108.8 million to $86.3 million.
Broadcast and internet operating income increased from $41.7 million, to $43 million.
Adjusted EBITDA increased $33 million, to $34.9 million.
“Despite softer than anticipated third quarter revenues, our continuing cost control measures helped to deliver positive Adjusted EBITDA for the quarter,”Alfred C. Liggins, Radio One’s CEO and President, stated. “We reaffirm our guidance for Adjusted EBITDA in the range of $133 million to $137 million for fiscal 2016.”
Q4 could be impacted by a tower deal: Liggins said that during Q3 it signed a letter of intent for the sale of its FM towers, and he anticipate closing that transaction by the end of this year.
In a conference call with investors held following the release of its Q3 numbers, Radio One said its tower rent is “just north of $1 million.” It loses rent it was collecting, with $1.6 million-$1.7 million less EBITDA now forecast for Q4 by the company.