Beasley Fourth Quarter Net Revenue Off Slightly
January 30, 2014 at 4:41 AM (PT)
BEASLEY BROADCAST GROUP fourth-quarter net revenue fell 0.5% to $27.3 million, blamed on the loss of political advertising, with net income off 0.7% to $3.6 million. Same station net revenue excluding political advertising rose 2%.
Chairman/CEO GEORGE G. BEASLEY said, "BEASLEY BROADCAST GROUP's fourth-quarter net revenue decline primarily reflects a reduction in political spending as in the fourth quarter of 2012 we recorded approximately $1.2 million in political advertising revenue. While we were not able to fully offset the cyclical impact of political revenue, the fourth-quarter radio advertising environment in our markets remains healthy and on an actual basis we reported just a slight decline in net revenue compared with last year. Excluding the benefit of political advertising in the year-ago quarter, BEASLEY BROADCAST GROUP's 2013 fourth quarter same station net revenue rose approximately 2% and, reflecting our success throughout 2013, actual full year net revenue rose 4.7% while same station net revenue for 2013 was up 1.9% versus full year 2012.
"Overall, for our five markets that report to MILLER KAPLAN – which represent approximately 76% of total fourth-quarter revenue – BEASLEY station cluster revenue declined by 2.6%, which again was primarily attributable to the cyclical nature of political advertising, while the total revenue for all reporting radio stations in these markets decreased by 4.1% for the quarter. BEASLEY BROADCAST GROUP's out-performance relative to our markets again highlights the benefit of our organization-wide focus on strong core programming and targeted localism. Our planned investments in sales and programming and the expansion of our digital offerings, combined with the revenue decline, led to fourth quarter 2013 SOI which was 5.2% below year-ago levels.
"In addition to our focus on core programming and expanding our on-air and digital advertising platforms, we continue to strengthen our balance sheet. Reflecting strong operating cash flow, we made repayments totaling $3.4 million against the credit facility during the fourth quarter, reducing borrowings to $106.9 million at DECEMBER 31, 2013 from $116.8 million at the end of 2012. Our debt and leverage reduction initiatives over the last few years are benefiting our bottom line, as fourth quarter interest expense declined year-over-year by over 34%, or approximately $0.7 million, while our leverage ratio is at its lowest level in over 10 years. We intend to continue using cash from operations to further lower debt and to pursue other initiatives to enhance shareholder value. In this regard, during the fourth quarter the Company re-initiated a quarterly cash dividend of $0.045 per share with the first dividend paid earlier this month.
"In 2014, we remain focused on ensuring that our station clusters match or exceed their market's revenue performance while further strengthening our balance sheet. We have strong station clusters and ratings in key markets and excellent leadership and personnel across our organization. We believe our focus on our core content and new media opportunities positions BEASLEY BROADCAST GROUP to deliver compelling entertainment to radio users, a high value media buy for advertisers and profitable station and digital revenue growth for the Company."