Media General Merger With LIN Nets Strong Growth

TV station group owner Media General posted strong fourth-quarter and full-year revenue growth from higher political advertising revenues, pay-TV subscriber fees, digital revenues, and new station acquisitions.

Included in its results is also the completion of its $2.6 billion merger with another large TV station group LIN Media. The Media General company now has 71 TV stations in 48 markets.

“On a comparative basis, we increased net revenues by 17% in 2014, versus the prior year,” says Vincent Sadusky, president/chief executive officer of Media General, in a statement.

Total net revenue for the year grew to $675 million from $270 million in 2013, with operating income more than triple to $115 million from $34 million.

Local revenues -- which include net local advertising revenues, retransmission consent fees and television station Web site revenues -- improved 5% to $237 million in the fourth quarter.

National revenues were 6% lower to $64 million in the fourth quarter compared to the prior year. Digital revenues grew 34% to $35 million in the fourth quarter. For the full year, net digital revenues increased 65% to $125 million.



Political revenues were $65 million in the fourth quarter and $116 million for the full year.

For the first quarter, Media General anticipates broadcast revenues between $262 million and $266 million; with digital revenues between $33 million and $35 million. Total revenue estimates are that the first quarter will be at $295 million to $301 million.

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