Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Beasley Reports 54 Percent Revenue Drop

Beasley Broadcast Group swung to a loss in the second quarter amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The Naples Daily News reports the radio operator saw its net revenue drop by nearly 54% to $30.4 million, down from $65.7 million a year ago, primarily due to declines in commercial and digital advertising caused by the health crisis that took a toll on businesses across the country.

Revenues from national and local advertisers fell sharply, with so many businesses closed or operating on a limited basis because of government shutdowns and safety concerns spurred by the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

In the second quarter, Beasley Broadcast reported a loss of $18.2 million, or 63 cents a share. That compared to profits of $4.3 million, or 15 cents a share, a year ago.

Beasley Broadcast primarily attributed the negative results to the year-over-year decline in net revenue and modifications to its long-term debt, which cost it $2.8 million in the  quarter.

Caroline Beasley
In a news release, Caroline Beasley, the company's CEO, said the tough quarter reflected the economic pressures the broadcaster faced as advertisers "adapted their media plans to meet the unique challenges of the pandemic."

The nearly 60-year-old media company, with 64 stations in 15 markets, has taken several steps to help it navigate through the crisis. That includes reducing operating expenses and corporate overhead, as well as realigning its cost structure companywide.

As a result of the company's cost-cutting measures operating expenses declined by nearly 13% in the second quarter, when compared to a year ago.

Beasley Broadcast has also taken proactive steps to accelerate its digital transformation initiatives and revenue diversification strategies — and to become a leaner and more efficient organization — in the face of the pandemic.

The company continues to see positive results from its digital and esports investments, which have been less impacted by the economic disruption caused by COVID-19.

The digital side of its business accounted for 14% of total revenues in the second quarter, up from 7.4% last year.

Looking ahead, Beasley said she's "guardedly optimistic," with advertising revenues on the upswing.

"While we expect that the pandemic will continue to impact our operations in the third quarter, we intend to continue to actively manage our business to best position the company for the future, with the goal of delivering exceptional content and services to our listeners, advertisers, online users and esports fans, while creating new value for our shareholders," she said.

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