Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Saga Reports Big Revenue Loss

Saga Communications, Inc. reported today that second quarter revenue and related net income (loss) was materially impacted by disruptions to businesses and service providers activities from closures and restrictive measures imposed by governmental authorities attributable to COVID-19 in the markets in which the Company operates, and the nation as a whole.

The inability for businesses and service providers to operate normally negatively impacted all broadcast and other media advertising. Initial industry estimates for radio broadcast revenue predicted a decrease in gross revenue of more than 50% for the month of April.  This held true for Saga as well.

The company, however, did show monthly revenue improvements for each subsequent month, as the Company concentrated on new revenue strategies and enhanced engagement with its existing and new advertisers. This trend has continued through Q2 and further revenue improvement has been noted in the beginning of Q3. From the Company's low point in April when its gross revenue was down 55% compared to the prior period, its revenue has continued to build.  The Company's July revenue was down 29% over the prior period. These amounts represent gross cash revenue. Trade and barter revenue are not included in these gross revenue numbers, because it only represents approximately 2% of the Company's revenue each month. From the start of Q2 to the end of the first month of Q3 there was a reduction in the decline in revenue by approximately 50%.

Saga's Ed Christian
The Company's balance sheet reflects $48.9 million in cash on hand as of June 30, 2020 and $47.5 million as of August 3, 2020.  The Company's total bank debt remained at $10 million as of the end of the quarter.  Including the significant impact on its revenue, the Company's trailing twelve-month leverage ratio is an extremely conservative 0.65, per our bank covenant calculation, and below zero when cash on hand is included in the calculation.

Net revenue was $16.9 million for the quarter ended June 30, 2020.    Station operating expense decreased $4.2 million to $18.7 million for the same period.  An operating loss of $8.7 million was incurred for the quarter with a net loss of $4.9 million.  Diluted earnings per share were -$0.82 in the 2nd quarter of 2020.  Results for the quarter include a non-cash impairment charge of $3.8 million.  Without the non-cash impairment charge, the Company would have had a net loss of $2.2 million or -$0.37 per share.

For the six months ended June 30, 2020 net revenue was $42.9 million with an operating loss of $6.5 million.  Net loss for the six-month period was $3.2 million.  On a fully diluted basis earnings per share were -$0.54.  The net loss for the six-month period without the non-cash impairment charge would have been $564 thousand or -$0.09 per share.

Capital expenditures in the second quarter were $358 thousand compared to $2.0 million for the same period last year.  For the six-month period capital expenditures were $1.4 million compared to $3.2 million for the same period last year.  The Company expects to spend approximately $2.0 – 2.5 million for capital expenditures during 2020 which is down from the Company's normative annual capital expenditures of $5.0 – 6.0 million.

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