A Rosy Quarter For TEGNA


The broadcast TV company formerly known as Gannett posted a rosy Q2 earnings report on Wednesday. Net revenues were up, while its earnings per share soared year-over-year by 87%.

Total company revenue from continuing operations grew 7.1% year-over-year, at the high end of the guidance range provided last quarter, to $524 million. This was driven by subscription revenue growth and higher political revenue, TEGNA said.

Operating income rose 2.7%, to $154.1 million, as income from continuing operations surged to $92.5 million (43 cents per share) from $49.3 million (23 cents).

On a non-GAAP basis, operating income declined to $147.8 million from $152.8 million.

But, net income from continuing operations on a non-GAAP basis jumped to $78.4 million from $63.1 million.

Adjusted EBITDA was off 1%, to $169.6 million.

Political advertising played a large role in TEGNA’s quarter of success, with $25.7 million in political seen. This offset a 4.9% dip in advertising and marketing services in Q2; this includes digital advertising and all digital marketing platforms.

“Our progress in the quarter gives us confidence that our growth strategy is on track,” TEGNA President/CEO Dave Lougee said. “Our business mix continues to evolve toward predictable and profitable subscription-based revenue streams. Contrary to conventional wisdom, our paid subscriber base is very stable, and in fact, our total number of paid subscribers were up year-over-year for the first time in recent years. The bottom line: any lost traditional subs are being offset by new subscribers from OTT virtual MVPDs. As a result of this dynamic as well as annual rate increases, subscription revenues were up double-digits in the quarter.”

Meanwhile, demand for Premion — TEGNA’s “one-stop shop” OTT advertising platform for regional and local advertisers, continues to accelerate as new markets are opened. As such, TEGNA increased Premion’s full year revenue guidance from $60 million to $75 million, excluding political advertising.”

For Q3, TEGNA expects total company revenue to increase mid-teens year-over-year — driven by “substantially higher” political revenue, subscription revenue growth and innovative initiatives such as Premion.