CBS 4Q: Outdoor, TV UP, Radio Dials Down
On the plus side: outdoor ad sales rose 15% to $110.9 million, while revenue climbed 10% in the fourth quarter to $580.6 million--much attributed to higher sales in the U.K, where CBS has a massive advertising arrangement with the London Underground.
Television programming continues to drive the company. Revenue climbed 3% to $2.6 billion from the "Star Trek'" syndication and affiliate fees. TV profit climbed a healthy 24% to $487.1 million. CBS also said its stations benefited heavily from political advertising, which gave the entire TV spot ad market a $2 billion lift in 2006.
However, radio continued to be a drain on the company, dropping 8% in revenue to $498.2 million. CBS has had ongoing problems in radio ever since talk personality Howard Stern left to go to Sirius Satellite Radio Inc. at the beginning of 2006.
CBS also touted its new stream of revenue from cable operators. Last week, CBS signed nine small retransmission agreements with cable-TV operators--getting money, for the first time, from cable systems to carry its CBS stations. The terms of those agreements were not disclosed. But analysts estimate these initial deals are valued at a modest $6 million a year. Les Moonves, CEO of CBS Corp., had said the company expects to reap hundreds of millions of dollars.