Tribune TV Revs Sink 20%, Ad Revs Down 7%

Tribune's broadcasting operations pulled down the company's overall results for the second quarter of this year.

Tribune's TV stations dropped 20% in revenue to $260 million. Much of this includes $41 million in one-time copyright royalties paid to WGN America in 2012.

At the same time, advertising revenue slipped 7% or $17 million because of weak general advertising sales at WPIX-TV New York. The station has been impacted by lower ratings; it was not broadcast in certain cable homes for a three-month period a year ago.

In addition, there were lower sports advertising sales at WGN-TV, where the station derives heavy revenues from Chicago's baseball teams.

Operating profit at its broadcasting unit dropped to $51 million against $124 million in the second quarter of 2012.



In July, Tribune said it would buy 19 television stations from Cincinnati-based Local TV LLC for $2.73 billion.

Plus, it said it would spin off its publishing division into a separate company by around mid-2014.

By way of comparison, Tribune's publishing operations outperformed its broadcasting businesses. Publishing revenues were down 4% to to $470 million, with advertising off by $19 million. Operating profit climbed fourfold to $60 million from $15 million in the second quarter of 2012.

Overall, Tribune Company revenues were down 10% or $86 million to $730 million. Net income was slashed by almost two-thirds, ending up at $66.3 million -- down from $170.8 million a year ago.

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