Blog Post

Media General’s Rising Online Revs Fail To Offset Lower Political Ad Spend

Media General (NYSE: MEG) said online revenues grew 27.3 percent in October to $3.5 million from $2.8 million a year ago. Meanwhile, year-to-date, the Richmond, VA-based publisher’s interactive segment was up 34.3 percent to $30.6 million from $22.8 million for the same in 2006. Still, consistent with the fortunes of the newspaper industry, Media General’s total revenues of $97.1 million, a decrease of $13.1 million, or 11.8 percent from last October. Also, newspaper ad revenues in October dropped $5.5 million, or 11.2 percent; Media General said more than 90 percent of the decline was attributable to soft real estate in the Tampa market.The company also attributed its weak performance last month to the absence of nearly $17.5 million of political ad revenues. A breakdown of its October results included:

Interactive Media: Thanks to rising revenues from its adver-gaming business, strong growth in national/regional as well as local helped power online revenues last month. National/Regional advertising increased 55.5 percent, reflecting higher spending by national agencies, notably at in Tampa. Adver-gaming revenues more than doubled from last year. Revenues from Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) HotJobs, which were not listed, also helped mitigate the overall softness in classified revenues, which fell 9.7 percent.

Local online: Revenues in this segment rose 43.1 percent over October 2006, due to a continued focus on direct sales. Release