Meredith’s TV station operating profits climb 8% to $46M

Meredith HQ
Meredith owns 17 television stations reaching 11% of households. (Meredith)

Meredith’s local media group reported operating profit growth of 9%, up to $46 million, during the company’s fiscal fourth quarter.

The segment’s EBITDA grew 6% to $55 million and revenues increased 8% to $152 million.

Within the group, Meredith owns 17 television stations reaching 11% of households, with seven stations in the U.S.’s top 25 markets.

During the quarter, Meredith said stations in 10 of its 12 markets ranked No. 1 or No. 2 in morning or late news ratings.

For the fiscal year, Meredith’s local media group grew its operating profit by 36% to $215 million and its EBITDA by 27% to $250 million. Total revenues for the year increased 15% to $630 million.

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"We delivered record revenue and profit in fiscal 2017 as we continue to aggressively execute our multi-platform growth strategies, including rapid expansion of our highly profitable digital activities," said Meredith Chairman and CEO Stephen Lacy in a statement. "Additionally, we delivered strong cash flow and higher profit margins. This enabled us to continue successful execution of our Total Shareholder Return (TSR) strategy."

Breaking out the TV segment’s results for the year, total advertising revenues grew 7% to what Meredith said is a record $414 million, thanks in part to political advertising revenues reaching $63 million. Nonpolitical advertising revenues were $352 million, down from $374 million last year, due in part to the Super Bowl moving to FOX from CBS and the Summer Olympic Games on NBC.

Meredith’s other revenues and operating expenses rose thanks to higher retransmission revenues from cable and satellite television operators, but was offset by higher programming fees paid to affiliated networks.