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Gannett Co., Inc. (GCI) operates as a media and marketing solutions company in the United States and internationally. Its Publishing segment publishes 82 U.S. daily newspapers with affiliated online sites, including USA TODAY, a national, general-interest daily publication; USATODAY.

It is scheduled to report its Q2 2012 results on July 16, 2012, before the market opens. In this article I will recap the historical results of the company, latest EPS estimates vs. surprises, latest developments and closest competitors' development.

Technical Overview


The stock has a market capitalization of $3.46B and is currently trading at $14.73 with a 52 week range of $8.28 - $16.26. The stock performance year to date: 13.48%. It is currently trading above 20, 50 and 200 SMA.

Key Metrics

  • Trailing P/E: 8.17
  • Forward P/E: 6.82
  • Price/Sales: 0.66
  • Price/Book: 1.48
  • PEG Ratio: 1.35
  • Total Debt: 1.67B
  • Annual dividend yield: 3.80%
  • Return on Equity: 19.14%
  • Return on Assets: 7.71%

Recent EPS Actuals vs. Estimates

The company has met or beaten analysts' estimates in the last four quarters. In the last quarter it reported $0.34 EPS, beating analyst estimates of $0.31.

The consensus EPS estimate is $0.53 based on 9 analysts' estimates, down from $0.58 a year ago. Revenue estimates are $1.32B, just below $1.33B a year ago. The median target price by analysts for the stock is $17.00.

Average recommendation: Overweight

Source: Marketwatch

Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades

  • On June 26, 2012, Imperial Capital initiated Outperform rating for the company.
  • On February 24, 2012, Barclays Capital initiated Equal Weight rating for the company.

Latest Developments

  • On June 21, 2012, Gannett Co., Inc. announced that Victoria Harker has been named chief financial officer of the Company. Harker succeeds Paul Saleh, who left the Company in May. Harker will join Gannett on July 23, 2012.
  • On May 14, 2012, Gannett Co., Inc. announced that Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Paul Saleh has resigned to accept a position with a Fortune 200 company.
  • On May 1, 2012, Gannett Co., Inc. announced that its Board of Directors also declared a regular quarterly dividend of $0.20 per share, payable on July 2, 2012, to shareholders of record on June 8, 2012.
  • On February 22, 2012, Gannett Co., Inc.'s USA TODAY Sports Media Group and MLB Advanced Media, L.P. (MLBAM), the interactive media and Internet company of Major League Baseball, announced a joint venture to develop and produce new content and products for sports fans across all digital and mobile platforms.
  • On February 22, 2012, Gannett Co., Inc. announced that the Board has authorized a 150% increase in Gannett's dividend to $0.80 per share on an annual basis. The first $0.20 quarterly dividend under this policy will be payable on April 2, 2012, to shareholders of record on March 9, 2012.
  • On February 22, 2012, Gannett Co., Inc. announced that for fiscal 2012, it expects earnings per share estimates to remain in line with the current consensus of approximately $2.18 as the new initiatives begin to contribute to profitability in the second half of the year and for the first quarter of 2012, it expects earnings per share to be in the range of $0.28 to $0.32. The Company also announced that by fiscal 2015, it expects overall annual revenue growth in the range of 2% to 4%. According to I/B/E/S Estimates, analysts on an average are expecting the Company to report EPS of $2.18 for fiscal 2012; EPS of $0.40 for the first quarter of 2012.
  • On January 24, 2012, The USA TODAY Sports Media Group announced that it has completed its acquisition of Fantasy Sports Ventures (FSV) and Big Lead Sports, the independent digital sports property in North America.

Competitors

Gannett Co., Inc. operates in Publishing - Newspapers industry. The company could be compared to The McClatchy Company (MNI), News Corp. (NWSA), and The New York Times Company (NYT). Below is the table comparison of the most important ratios between these companies and the industry.

Below is the chart comparison with the stock price changes as a percentage for the selected companies and S&P 500 index for the last one year period.

(click to enlarge)GCI Chart

GCI data by YCharts

Competitors' Latest Development

  • On June 28, 2012, Reuters reported that the Board of The News Corporation has approved in principle the split of its publishing and entertainment businesses into two separate publicly traded companies.
  • On June 28, 2012, The News Corporation announced that it intends to pursue the separation of publishing and media and entertainment businesses into two distinct publicly traded companies.
  • On June 26, 2012, Reuters reported that according to the Wall Street Journal, The News Corporation is thinking of splitting into two companies. A final decision on the split has not been made, the paper said, adding that the Murdoch family is not expected to lose its effective control of any of the businesses involved.
  • On June 20, 2012, Reuters reported that The News Corporation announced sweeping changes in Australia, including job cuts and shrinking the number of its divisions from 19 to five, the latest local media group to restructure in the face of declining ad sales.
  • On June 20, 2012, The News Corporation announced that it notes the statement made by Consolidated Media Holdings Limited regarding a proposal by News Limited (NEWS) to acquire Consolidated Media at a price of AUD 3.50 per share.
  • On June 6, 2012, The News Corporation and ESPN announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which a unit of News Corporation will buy ESPN's 50% equity interest in ESPN STAR Sports (ESS).
  • On June 6, 2012, Reuters reported that The News Corporation has taken full control of its Asian joint venture ESPN STAR Sports , buying out The Walt Disney Company's 50% share to end a 16-year partnership in the region.
  • On May 16, 2012, The McClatchy Company announced that it has named Elaine Lintecum as vice president, finance and chief financial officer (NASDAQ:CFO), effective immediately.
  • On March 22, 2012, The McClatchy Company announced that Gary B. Pruitt, Chairman, President and Chief Executive of McClatchy, will leave the Company May 16, 2012. McClatchy's Board of Directors has named Patrick J. Talamantes, McClatchy's current vice president, finance and Chief Financial Officer, as Pruitt's successor.
  • On February 21, 2012, Rentrak Corporation announced a Network TV Essentials contract with News Corp Star U.S., LLC for network, Star TV, which is one of the networks serving the South Asian market.
  • On January 16, 2012, The News Corporation and MOBY Group announced that they have reached an agreement under which News Corporation will become a minority investor in MOBY, a media company headquartered in Dubai and active in Central Asia, principally Afghanistan, and the Middle East.

Sources: Yahoo Finance, Google Finance, Marketwatch, Finviz, Reuters.

Source: Earnings Preview: Gannett Co.