Earnings: Gannett Q3 Revenue Slips 3.8 Percent; Income Down 8.6 Percent; Online Ad Rev Up 16 Percent

Gannett reported a 3.8 percent fall in revenue for Q3 to $1.81 billion from $1.88 billion, stemming from a 5.6 percent decline in newspaper advertising revenue. The company also took a 3.4 percent revenue hit at its broadcast operations. Net income on a continuing basis dropped by 8.6 percent, to $234 million from $256 million. On a per-share basis, the company earned $1.01, down from $1.09. Like McClatchy, the company was hard hit in the west and in Florida, due to the real estate market. The drop in business was partly offset by a 1.9 percent decrease in operating expenses.
Release | Webcast | Transcript (via SeekingAlpha)

There was no discussion of its digital business, although in a separate release, it claims 21.02 million unique monthly visitors in September, or 13.6 percent of the internet audience.

Earnings call: CEO Craig Dubow detailed the company’s digital business, noting that total online ad revenues grew by 16 percent at the company. At its specifically digital units, PointRoll saw revenue growth of 26 percent, while CareerBuilder’s network-wide growth was 17 percent, hitting $200 million in revenue for the quarter. As for the future of its CareerBuilder stake, the company says it enjoys operating the company as it is, although it’s always looking for ways to unlock value.

Dubow was asked whether it had given any thought to a spinoff of its broadcast business, in the wake of Belo (NYSE: BLC) and Scripps. No plans to do so now, in part because the company’s broadcast operations are a fairly small chunk of the total business.

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