Scripps Networks Revs, Scatter Prices Rise In Q4

Scripps Networks Interactive posted 7% higher advertising revenue for its fourth-quarter 2013.

Scripps Networks Interactive -- which owns Food Network, HGTV, Cooking Channel, Travel Channel and DIY Network -- took in $439 million in advertising revenue, and $182 million in affiliate revenues, up 9% versus the fourth quarter of 2012 -- both in line with expectations from analysts.

But one analyst, Vasily Karasyov of Sterne Agee, worried that viewers at Scripps’ Food Network appear stagnant, if not losing ground overall. In 2013, the network was down 6% in prime-time to 1.122 million viewers and down 7% in daytime viewers at 610,000.

Food Network made some improvements in the fourth quarter of 2013, with total viewership unchanged in the fourth quarter at 1.043 million viewers versus the same period a year before.

Scripps notes that for the company, fourth-quarter scatter pricing has been up in mid-single-digit percentage gains versus the same period a year ago.

Looking forward, it says first-quarter scatter market in 2014 continues to grow over upfront pricing set last June/July with cost per thousand viewer prices up in the low to mid-teen percentages.

Scripps Networks overall revenue was up 8.2% to $654 million, with operating income up 2.8% to $273 million. Going forward for 2014, Scripps sees continued revenue gains between 6% and 8%.

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