Scripps records Q4 miss despite acquisition-driven revenue growth


E.W. Scripps closed down 0.7% after an earnings miss in its Q4 results despite revenues that grew 36%, mainly from acquiring TV and radio stations from Journal Media Group.

An adjusted net profit again became a headline loss (loss from continuing operations of $21.5M) after a writedown -- in this case, a $45.7M noncash pension settlement charge. Excluding that and acquisition costs of $1M, the company logged $7.8M in profit.

Operating revenue by segment: Television, $170.5M (up 20.5%); Radio, $19M (new); Digital, $13.2M (up 93.3%); Syndication and other, $2M (down 12.8%).

Retransmission revenues more than doubled to $35.9M, and a new long-term agreement with Time Warner Cable should increase retrans revenues 50% Y/Y in 2016.

For Q1, the compay expects TV revenues to grow 11-13% and digital revenue to grow about 45%, while radio revenue should be down in the mid-single digits. Retransmission revenue is forecast for $54M. In the full year, it sees TV revenues growing by about a third, digital gains of more than 40%, and flat radio revenues, and about $220M in retrans revenue (along with $150M-plus in election-year political revenue).

Related: E. W. Scripps' (NYSE:SSP) CEO Rich Boehne on Q4 2015 Results - Earnings Call Transcript (Feb. 26 2016)

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