Clear Channel Profits Up; Radio Revenue Rises 7%
February 23, 2007 at 7:38 AM (PT)
CLEAR CHANNEL COMMUNICATIONS reports fourth-quarter profit from continuing operations rose 15% as advertising sales increased.
Profit from continuing operations rose to $210.1 million, or 43 cents a share, from $182.7 million a year earlier, when the company spun off the LIVE NATION concert business. Sales rose 11% to $1.94 billion, CLEAR CHANNEL said today in a statement. Net income fell to $211.3 million, or 43 cents a share, from $461.6 million, or 86 cents, a year earlier, when the LIVE NATION concert business and other discontinued units contributed $278.9 million.
CLEAR CHANNEL, which is being bought for $19 billion by two private equity firms, instituted "Less Is More," cutting the number and length of commercials to attract listeners and advertisers. The move helped revive sales growth, which had slowed in the previous year as listeners migrated to satellite and Internet radio.
Radio revenue rose 7% to $966.8 million. CLEAR CHANNEL said political and automotive were among the advertising categories showing strength in the quarter.
The company isn't holding a conference call on the earnings today because of the pending buyout.
Deadline Today For Bids
Today is the deadline set by CLEAR CHANNEL for bids on the radio assets it has put up for sale. CLEAR CHANNEL said last year it aimed to sell 448 of its 1,150 radio stations, as well as its 42-station television group by the end of JUNE, as it the deal to be taken private.
Interest in the radio stations has been strong, with potential buyers expressing interest in snapping up the radio assets as a whole, as well as individual stations, a source familiar with the situation told REUTERS a week ago.