Meredith Profit Overcomes Broadcasting Declines

Oct 24, 2005  •  Post A Comment

Meredith Corp. said Monday that it posted an 11 percent rise in fiscal first-quarter profit to $26.4 million, as declines at its 14-station broadcasting unit were offset by the performance of recently acquired publishing properties.

The Des Moines, Iowa-based company’s revenue for the three months ended Sept. 30 surged 35 percent to $390.3 million, fueled mainly by the addition of Parents, Family Circle, Fitness and Child magazines. Meredith completed its acquisition of the magazines July 1.

The strength of those assets helped offset declines at Meredith’s television stations, which were hurt by the absence of political advertising ($6.4 million net in such advertising was recorded in the year-ago period). That shortfall led the broadcasting unit to post an 11 percent operating profit decline to $12.8 million.

However, revenue for the unit fell just 2 percent, thanks to a 7 percent increase in nonpolitical advertising at the national and local levels. The company attributed those increases to higher ratings at its Atlanta and Phoenix CBS affiliates, as well as stronger ratings at the company’s stations in Nashville; Portland, Ore.; and Kansas City, Mo.