Citadel Q4 Revenues Rise
March 1, 2007 at 8:56 AM (PT)
CITADEL BROADCASTING CORP. fourth quarter net revenues jumped 5.3% to $114 million, credited to increases in over 80% of the company's markets, with best performance coming from ALBUQUERQUE, NEW ORLEANS, BOISE, SALT LAKE CITY, and MODESTO. Station operating income rose 6.8% to $49 million, but net income fell from $15.8 million to a loss of $1.1 million (gain of 14 cents to loss of 1 cent/share). The loss was the result of $2.2 million of costs related to the FCC's payola investigation, a non-cash asset impairment of $14.8 million related to the valuation of intangible assets, and $4.1 million of non-cash stock-based compensation, net of tax. Free cash flow was also hit by the payola investigation, falling 14.8% to $29.4 million.
Chairman/CEO FARID SULEMAN said, "The company reported a 5.3% increase in net revenues with a corresponding 6.8% growth in station operating income. This revenue growth was across the majority of our markets with over 35% of the markets reporting double-digit revenue growth when compared to the same period in 2005. The company has also continued to focus on shareholder value. Since inception of the stock repurchase program in 2004 to date, the company has purchased over 25 million shares, or approximately 46% of its public float, for $331.4 million. During 2006, the company returned approximately $141.6 million to our shareholders through a combination of dividend payments, totaling 72 cents per share, and the repurchase of approximately 5.2 million shares under our stock repurchase program."
CITADEL is still awaiting closing of its deal to combine 22 ABC RADIO stations and the ABC RADIO NETWORK with its own operations; closing will not occur before MAY 31.