Scripps August revenues up 11 percent

Thu, September 12, 2002 by Tim Stautberg

CINCINNATI – The E. W. Scripps Company’s consolidated revenues for August were $126 million, up 11 percent from the same period a year ago.Revenues from the company’s Scripps Networks operating division were $32.8 million, up 25 percent from August 2001. Broken down by category, Scripps Networks advertising revenues were $25.3 million, up 23 percent, and affiliate fee revenues were $7.1 million, up 36 percent.Scripps Networks includes Home & Garden Television, the Food Network, the DIY – Do It Yourself Network and Fine Living.Distribution of HGTV and Food continued to grow during August. HGTV now reaches 79.5 million homes, up 6.1 million, or 8.3 percent, from the same month a year ago. Food Network can now be seen in 76.3 million homes, up 10 million, or 15 percent, from August 2001. DIY can be seen in 12 million households and Fine Living has about 2 million subscribers. At the company’s newspapers, August revenues were $61 million, up 4.3 percent from the previous year. Newspaper advertising revenues were up 2.1 percent for the month, year-over-year. Broken down by category, classified advertising was up 2.7 percent, national increased 2.3 percent and preprint and other was up 9.4 percent. Local newspaper advertising was down 2.4 percent.Other newspaper revenues were $6.7 million, an increase of $1.7 million over the same month a year ago primarily because of improved operating results in Denver. The company’s share of operating income from the jointly owned Denver Newspaper Agency is reported as other newspaper revenue.At the company’s broadcast television stations, August revenues were $24 million, an 11 percent increase from the same month last year. Political advertising revenues were $1.6 million during the month compared to $200,000 in August 2001. Local broadcast television advertising revenues were up 10 percent to $13.7 million. National broadcast television advertising was $7.8 million, about even with the prior year.Based on operating results for July and August, the company expects third quarter income from core operations to be near the high end of its previously issued guidance of 55 to 60 cents per share.The E.W. Scripps Company is a diverse media concern with interests in newspaper publishing, broadcast television, national television networks and interactive media. The company also plans to enter the television retailing market through the acquisition of the Shop At Home Network. The acquisition, announced in August, is pending approval of Shop At Home shareholders.Scripps operates 21 daily newspapers, 10 broadcast TV stations and four cable television networks. The company’s national television network brands include Home & Garden Television, Food Network, DIY -- Do It Yourself Network and Fine Living. Scripps Networks programming can be seen in 25 countries. Scripps also operates Scripps Howard News Service, United Media, the worldwide licensing and syndication home of PEANUTS and DILBERT, and 31 Web sites, including hgtv.com, foodtv.com, diynet.com, fineliving.com and comics.com.

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