WJAR parent company posts net loss in 1Q

MEDIA GENERAL – parent company of WJAR-TV, NBC 10 – posted a net revenue loss during the first three months of 2012.
Posted 4/18/12

RICHMOND, Va. – Media General – parent company of WJAR-TV NBC 10 – posted a net revenue loss during the first three months of 2012.

The company posted a $34.4 million, or $1.54 per share, loss in the first quarter of 2012, compared with a $25.8 million, or $1.15 per share, loss in the same period 2011.

The media goliath, which announced its first quarter earnings on Wednesday, has reported a loss in eight of the last nine reported quarters.

However, revenue for Media General was up 0.3 percent to $149.5 million from $148.9 million during the same period last year.

The company reported an operating profit of $3.2 million for the quarter ended March 25 compared to an operating loss of $4.2 million a year ago.

“All of our geographic markets generated profit improvements over the last year,” Marshall N. Morton, president and CEO said in prepared remarks.

Profits in the Ohio/Rhode Island market rose 36 percent to $3.2 million from $2.3 million in 2011.

Media General said the increase was due to higher political and Super Bowl revenues as well as new business initiatives.

Political revenues in the area during the first quarter of 2012 were $673,000 compared with $98,000 during the same period in 2011.

Media General’s first quarter results included debt modification costs of $10 million related an amendment of the company's bank credit facility.

Interest expense in the first quarter dropped 8.5 percent from 2011.

Medial General’s operations include 18 network-affiliated television stations, 23 newspapers and the 41 websites associated with both. The company also operates three digital media advertising companies – Blackdot, DealTaker and NetInformer.

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