With Belo (NYSE: BLC) Corp preparing to split between newspapers and broadcast, there’s concern about what value there is in the newspaper assets. Belo Chairman and CEO Robert W. Decherd used his opportunity to present at the UBS Global Media & Communications Conference to explain just that. (I didn’t get a chance to catch the beginning of the session, about the broadcast side, but will check the webcast replay later.)
— Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) consortium: “Yahoo relationship is already making a difference.” HotJobs has passed Monster.com in the Dallas market. Unfortunately, beyond that the company was tight-lipped with details. (Belo said in Q3 earnings that HotJobs and Yahoo’s contextual advertising and web search capability are in place in Dallas, Riverside, and Providence. More after the jump…
— Reasons for optimism: Some newspapers are still growing in terms of readership. The challenge: “We have to make sure that our content reaches users wherever and how they want… cellphone, iPod, PDA.” Belo is a “news and information company.” The newspaper is just one way to distribute the news. New media initiatives — expect to announce new print and online soon.
— Mochila: In September, the company took a strategic stake in online digital marketplace Mochila.”Partnership creates a new opportunity for us to monetize and expand our reach.” Nothing quantitative here, but it’s still a young deal, so you wouldn’t expect it to be moving the needle at this point.
— HS Game Time: Revenue has exceeded expectations at high school sports site HS Game Time. The platform is used across assets at both AH Belo and Belo Corp., so both companies will actively participate in managing the site.
— Acquisitions: None planned at AH Belo. Scale doesn’t do much in the newspaper business, because each paper needs to buy newsprint and printing presses at the same price.