What Public-Company Performance Will Tell Us About Meredith, Other Media

Last week’s mega-deal in which Meredith Corp. sold itself to Barry Diller’s InterActiveCorp. for $2.7 billion or $42.18 per share, produced a sharp spike of 25.2% in Meredith’s stock, from $54.55 on October 6 to $58.20 on October 7, the day the deal was announced.

The stock has remained flat in the two trading days since the announcement, rising slightly to about &58.28 on the afternoon of October 11.

But the spike demonstrates a bullishness about the prospects of this gold-standard print media company joining forces with IAC’s Dotdash Media, itself a digital-media powerhouse.

With the third quarter concluded and the economy struggling to sustain a post-pandemic rebound, it’s a good time to take a look at the critical indicators as we head into earnings season — the time when publicly traded companies report their performance.

There aren’t many public companies in the magazine-media space, but they offer a window into the state of the business.



Meredith, for example, reported total revenue of 717.9 million for the quarter ending June 30, 2020 — the company’s fiscal fourth quarter — a 17% improvement from the prior year. It reported EBITDA of $123.6 million, a 55% improvement. Those numbers represented a significant improvement from the prior quarter, which saw revenue at $664.5 million and EBITDA at $111.7 million.

The period that ended on June 30 was the company’s fiscal fourth quarter. Full-year results included revenue of $3 billion, a 5% improvement from the prior year, with EBITDA of $683 million, compared to $548 the prior year.

Going forward, the focus will be on Meredith’s performance for its Q1 fiscal 2022, and especially, the two quarters after that, when the combined Meredith-Dotdash starts to see the benefits of its new synergy.

Another company to watch is TechTarget, the Newton, Massachusetts-based tech-media company, which has an advanced data-driven marketing services emphasis. The company’s stock was trading around $82 late Monday, significantly off its high for the year of $98.65 in February, but above the 12-month low of $44.06 in November. The company produced revenue of $116.6 million for its second quarter, ending on June 30. EBITDA was $23.4 million. Add to that  Ziff Davis.

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