Emmis Projects 20% Drop in Q4 Ad Sales
Texas Monthly publisher reports $167 million year-to-date loss.
Emmis Communications today reported an operating loss of $166.9 million through the first nine months of 2008, down from an operating income of $31.8 million during the same period in 2007. Net revenues for the period, the company said, were $265.3 million, down from $272.7 million during the same period in 2007.
For the fiscal third quarter, the Indianapolis-based regional publisher and radio broadcasting company posted an operating loss of $197.3 million on $85.1 million in revenue. That’s down from $2.2 in operating income on $90.5 million in revenues during the same period in 2007. Emmis attributed the loss, in part, to a non-cash impairment charge.
According to CEO Jeff Smulyan, Emmis is taking the necessary steps to “navigate through these difficult times” and “continues to generate cash flow that is greater than two times its annual interest costs.”
For the fiscal third quarter, net revenue in Emmis’ radio division was mostly flat at $62.2 million. Publishing division revenue was $22.8 million, down slightly from roughly $26 million during the third period in 2007. Each of Emmis’ magazines saw decreases in net revenue, the company said. The drop off “intensified” in the fourth quarter and the company projects publishing division ad sales for the quarter to be down 20 percent over 2007.
In November, Emmis slashed corporate salaries by 3 percent for employees who earn more than $50,000 per year. In addition to the salary reductions, the company cut 29 full-time and six part-time positions from its radio business—or about 4 percent of the overall workforce.
In August, Emmis eliminated 4.5 percent of its workforce—about 40 positions—from its magazine publishing division and lowered remaining employee salaries by 2 percent.