Hallmark Channels Ad Revs Up 3%

Crown Media’s Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movie Channel advertising revenue grew at a low single-digit percentage in the second quarter.

Advertising sales for the two cable TV networks was up 3% to $67.6 million; subscriber fee revenue improved 4% to $20.6 million; and overall revenue was 3% higher to $89.5 million.

The company notes that while scatter pricing is slightly down versus last year, current scatter CPMs (the cost per thousand viewers) are up 26% on Hallmark Channel and up 20% on Hallmark Movie Channel versus 2012-2013 upfront selling period.

For the just concluded 2013-2014 upfront period -- for TV advertising placed starting in September -- Crown Media says: “CPM growth remained consistent with the overall cable marketplace, growing by low-mid-single digits.”

Recently, Hallmark Channel launched its first original scripted series -- "Debbie Macomber's Cedar Cove" -- on July 20 and reached over 3.8 million unduplicated viewers, the third-best new drama premiere on cable this summer.

During the period, the company lowered its programming costs by 6% -- due to the expiration of a number of programming license agreements and the end of "The Martha Stewart Show" agreement.

Crown Media Holdings improved its cash flow -- earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization -- by 11% to $38.7 million. Net income during the period was $16.5 million versus $13.5 million in the second quarter of 2012



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