Gray TV Delivers Small Rev Uptick, Journal Communications' TV Rev Soars

As with other TV station groups, Gray Television took a hit from lower political advertising in the first quarter this year -- coming after last year's big political advertising season.

The mid-size Atlanta-based TV group total revenue said political advertising sank to $600,000 from $4.3 million in the first quarter of 2012. Overall revenues were down 3% to $78.2 million.

The company says some of this was offset by increased retrans consent revenue and local and national advertising revenue.

Gray said local advertising revenue inched up 1% to $46.4 million, with national advertising revenue up 3% to $13.4 million. Internet advertising revenue was flat at $5.7 million, and retrans revenue increased 14% to $9.7 million.

The Milwaukee-based Journal Communications also experienced lower political advertising for its TV properties. But overall, its fortunes were much better -- a 43.4% overall gain in television station revenue to $42.3 million in the first quarter of 2013.

The Journal recognized WTVF Nashville revenue results -- a recent acquisition -- during the period. Looking at a same-station basis, the Journal's first-quarter revenue was up 7.6%.

Journal said local advertising revenue was up 36.7% with national advertising revenue (excluding political advertising) 50.1% higher. Automotive advertising helped grow local advertising revenue; media and restaurant categories lifted its national advertising revenue coffers.

Political revenue pulled in just $400,000 in the quarter, down from $1.2 million a year ago. Retransmission revenue increased 145.1% to $5.4 million.

Journal's overall revenue -- which includes radio stations --  was $94.7 million in the quarter, up 15.1%.


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