Gannett Earnings Drop 25%: TV, Digital Up, Newspapers Slump

ArrowDownGannett Co. witnessed higher first-quarter revenue for its TV operations, based on stronger auto, political and overall Super Bowl advertising. But overall company profits fell from lower newspaper business.

Revenues climbed 7.5% to $176.2 million in the period for all its broadcast business. Television specifically gained nearly 8% to reach $170.9 million. Gannett’s retrans revenues were 17% higher to $22.8 million.

The group’s digital revenue from TV stations grew 5.6%. The company expects similar high-single-digit percentage growth gains for TV in the second quarter.

All Gannett’s digital businesses grew 8.2% to $272.8 million, primarily from its growth at CareerBuilder. Gannett has 120 domestic sites associated with its TV stations and newspapers, including USA Today.

The company says the USAToday app has more than 13 million downloads, including those across iPad, iPhone, Android, Windows and Kindle Fire.

In March, Gannett said its domestic Internet audience share was 57.9 million unique visitors, reaching 25.9 percent of the Internet audience, according to comScore Media Metrix.

Overall, Gannett’s first-quarter earnings fell 25% to $68.2 million due to restructuring costs and lower print advertising revenue at its newspapers. Readers are getting more news from the Internet and mobile devices.

Revenue at the company fell 2.6% to $1.22 billion. Gannett publishes 80 newspapers, including USA Today, which witnessed ad sales dropping 8.4% in the quarter.

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