Thursday, October 11, 2018

Emmis Reports Revenue Drop, To Reduce NextRadio Support

Emmis Communications Corporation today announced results for its second fiscal quarter ending August 31, 2018.

Emmis' radio net revenues for the second fiscal quarter were $30.7 million, down from $41.8 million in the prior year. Sales of radio stations (KPWR in LA in August 2017 and four radio stations in St. Louis on April 30, 2018) make our reported results not comparable year-over-year.

Pro forma for all radio station sales, Emmis' second quarter radio revenues as reported to Miller Kaplan, which excludes barter revenues and syndication revenues, were down 7% in markets that were down 4%. Our underperformance is principally due to weather-related issues for New York's Summer Jam in June, which led to Emmis' June revenues declining 16% for the month.

Jeff Smulyan
"Emmis' radio revenues were up 2% in both July and August, and Emmis' third quarter is off to a strong start with September revenues up 1% and October pacing up double digits, which would be our strongest month in four years," said Jeff Smulyan, CEO & Chairman of the Board of Emmis.

"Ratings remain strong in New York and continue to improve in Indianapolis. Austin has rebranded KGSR as Austin City Limits Radio, the result of a multi-year licensing agreement with Austin City Limits Enterprises, LLC, creating an eclectic format sure to connect with Austin listeners.  Also, our dynamic pricing business, Digonex, has seen a surge of new clients in the last couple of months and we are more excited than ever about the prospects for that business moving forward.

"For the past several months, Emmis and other companies in the radio industry have been working diligently to form a consortium that would own and operate the NextRadio and TagStation businesses," Smulyan continued.

"The participating companies envisioned using their collective scale and resources to build an attribution platform for the radio industry that would have provided the common language and measurement that radio advertisers are demanding.  Unfortunately, the consortium has not been formed and these efforts appear to have been unsuccessful.  Because Emmis is unwilling and unable to continue to fund the NextRadio and TagStation businesses as they are currently structured, we plan to dramatically reduce the operations of these businesses and explore other means of eliminating the operating losses from these businesses in the coming months."

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