Tegna Political Spend Dips, Digital Revs Rise

As with many TV station groups, Tegna Inc. witnessed declining political spending in its most recent financial results versus the year -- which had a negative effect on overall company revenues.

Political spending amounted to $10.5 million in the fourth quarter, down from $92.4 million in the fourth quarter 2014.

The McLean, Va.-based TV group, formerly known as Gannett Co., witnessed a 7% improvement in core local and national advertising to $296.3 million for its media segment -- its TV stations.

Digital TV-related revenue grew 15% to $31.1 million. Overall TV station revenues sank 6.6% to $462.2 million.

Tegna Media includes 46 television stations and is the largest independent station group of major network affiliates in the top 25 markets, covering one-third of all U.S. television households.



Retrans revenues were up nearly 30% to $119.9 million.

It expects first-quarter revenues to climb 10% to 12% from political advertising, retrans fees, and digital revenue.

Tegna’s pure digital businesses -- Cars.com and CareerBuilder -- slipped 1.2% to $339.3 million, with Cars.com revenues 5.7% higher and CareerBuilder’s revenues seeing a 4.2% decline.

Total fourth-quarter revenue was down 4.4% to $805.3 million with net income down 67.7% to $155.9 million. Mid-day trading of Tegna’s stock was up 1.4% to $22.48.

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