Arbitron And PPM Coalition Bury The Hatchet
Arb Financials: Net Income Up, Revs Down 2.6%
April 22, 2010 at 4:30 AM (PT)
ARBITRON announced financial results for the first quarter ended MARCH 31st, along with a resolution in their ongoing PPM battle with the PPM COALITION.
Said ARBITRON Pres./CEO WILLIAM T. KERR, "One of my top priorities has been to resolve responsibly the concerns of the PPM COALITION regarding PPM methodology. Today, THE COALITION and we announced an agreement for enhancements to our recruitment methodology that are designed to be a net benefit for all our PPM customers. My thanks go to Chairman EDOLPHUS TOWNS and to THE MEDIA RATING COUNCIL for their roles in advancing this agreement."
We are very pleased with the settlement. We hope it marks the beginning of a new kind of partnership with Arbitron where we all work together to continuously improve the PPM service which we believe will instill a new level of confidence in its results.
"We believe that this agreement represents a positive step that moves both groups forward in a spirit of collaboration," said ICBC BROADCAST HOLDINGS COO CHARLES WARFIELD, on behalf of the PPMC. "This has been a long and difficult journey, but we are committed to working closely with ARBITRON and the MRC and seeing the implementation of these initiatives."
"Reliable ratings data is vitally important for all stakeholders in the radio marketplace," added UNIVISION Pres./CEO JOE UVA. "ARBITRON's commitment to evolve its methodology is a step forward in achieving that goal."
"We are very pleased with the settlement. We hope it marks the beginning of a new kind of partnership with ARBITRON where we all work together to continuously improve the PPM service which we believe will instill a new level of confidence in its results," said SBS CRO FRANK FLORES.
Arbitron Q1 Financials
ARBITRON's net income for the quarter was $13.7 million, or $0.51 per share (diluted), an increase of 11.4%, compared with $12.3 million, or $0.46 per share (diluted), for the first quarter of 2009.
For Q1 2010, ARBITRON reported revenue of $95.9 million, a decrease of 2.6% as compared to revenue of $98.5 million during the first quarter of 2009.
ARBITRON wrote, "Revenue for the quarter declined versus the first quarter of 2009 as the result of a number of previously disclosed factors including: the decision by CUMULUS and CLEAR CHANNEL to subscribe to a competitor's diary-based radio ratings service in a limited number of small and medium-sized markets; the continuing impact of the advertising recession on renewals and new business; and the impact of certain customers, primarily UNIVISION, not subscribing to the PORTABLE PEOPLE METER service in certain markets. The impact of these items during the quarter offset the increase in revenue realized from the ongoing transition to PPM pricing in the 33 markets where the service is currently commercialized."
Added KERR, "Our results in the first quarter do not fully reflect the progress we have made in our PPM commercialization plan. We remain optimistic that an improvement in overall economic conditions will positively impact the advertising marketplace, which could favorably impact our customers and our own business.
"Our priorities for the balance of 2010 are straightforward. We will work toward the completion of the commercialization of the PPM ratings service. We will continue our programs that are designed to improve key sample quality metrics for our PPM and diary services. We will continue our efforts to obtain and maintain MEDIA RATING COUNCIL accreditation for our services across all of our markets and we will continue our efforts to further develop our cross-platform measurement capabilities.
"While we are encouraged by recent improvement in the overall economic environment and in the radio industry in particular, we also know that it will not turn around overnight. However, we are committed to working with our customers to help position the radio industry to benefit from the recovery as it may occur."
[Do you think this is the last we'll hear of PPM complaints? Do you have an issue with the system that you believe has not yet been addressed? Please share your thoughts below.]