'The New York Times' Reports Digital Subscription Growth, Stock Falls Following Future Projections

The New York Times
released its second-quarter 2019 results this week, showing a steady uptick in digital subscribers.

The company reported $436.25 million in revenue, falling short of the $439.25 million estimated by analysts. The company reports an operating profit of $37.9 million in Q2 2019, compared to $40 million during same period of 2018.

Digital subscriptions continued to climb, with The Times adding 197,000 net new digital-only subscriptions in Q2. According to a statement by president-CEO Mark Thompson, 131,000 of those came from the company’s core news product, with the rest coming from its Cooking and Crossword products.

The Times currently has 4.7 total subscriptions; it anticipates meeting its goal of 10 million by 2025.

Thompson also counted the successful launch of “The Weekly,” airing on FX and Hulu, as a big moment during the quarter. The new show was the “largest driver of the 30% growth in other revenue in the quarter.” 



While The Times’ digital advertising grew by almost 14%, which included strong performances in direct sales, the outlook wasn’t quite as positive.

“We expect the second half of 2019 to be somewhat more challenging for digital advertising than the first half, with this year’s revenue coming against our large gains in the third and fourth quarters of 2018,” Thompson stated.

Following this news, The Times’ stock fell by as much as nearly 20%. 

Total advertising revenue is expected to decrease in the high-single digits in Q3, compared to the same time last year. Digital advertising is expected to decrease in the high single digits.

The Times predicts its total subscription revenues will increase in the low- to mid- single digits in Q3 2019, compared to the same time last year. Digital-only subscription revenue is expected to increase in the mid-teens.

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