Meredith Reports Strong First Quarter Earnings Growth
(Press Release) DES MOINES, Iowa, Oct. 26 — Meredith Corporation, the leading media and marketing company serving American women, today reported that fiscal 2011 first quarter earnings per share increased 40 percent to $0.56, compared to $0.40 in the year-ago period. Revenues rose 4 percent to $344 million.
Fiscal 2011 first quarter highlights included:
- A 7 percent increase in total Company advertising revenues;
- Television spot advertising revenue growth of 27 percent, including $12 million in net political advertising and an 8 percent increase in non-political advertising;
- Higher magazine net advertising revenues per page, and more than 20 percent growth in online revenues across Meredith's national websites;
- Strong revenue growth from businesses not dependent on advertising including Meredith Integrated Marketing (+7 percent) and Brand Licensing (+17 percent); and
- A decline in total Company expenses, even with increased investment in emerging media platforms, including mobile and eTablets.
"We're off to a great start in fiscal 2011, with first quarter profit growth of 40 percent driven by record demand for political advertising, as well as strong non-political advertising growth at our Local Media Group properties," said Meredith Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Stephen M. Lacy. "At the same time, our National Media Group increased magazine advertising rates per page, grew digital advertising revenues, and posted strong revenue growth in businesses not dependent on advertising. We also reduced total company expenses 1 percent, on top of an 8 percent decline in the year-ago period."
Local Media Group Profits Rise
Fiscal 2011 first quarter Local Media Group operating profit rose significantly to $17 million from $2 million in the year-ago period. Revenues rose 25 percent to $76 million.
In the first quarter of fiscal 2011, political advertising revenues were $12 million, a record high for a Meredith fiscal first quarter, led by strong political spending in the Hartford, Las Vegas and Nashville markets. Non-political revenues rose 8 percent to $58 million. Performance was particularly strong at Meredith's stations in Hartford, Phoenix and Las Vegas. Eight of Meredith's 10-largest non-political advertising categories grew revenues, led by automotive, retail and media-related advertisers.