Belo posts b’cast gains

Media co.'s revs climb 10%

A.H. Belo Corp. reported slightly higher second-quarter earnings compared to a year ago, with revenue growth of its broadcast and publishing arms consistent with expectations.

The media company reported second-quarter segment revenues of $366.3 million, up 10% from $331.8 million in 1997. Segment operating cash flow was up 13% to $130.9 million compared with $116 million a year ago.

The media company said that it expected full-year cash flow for A.H. Belo could still increase by high single-digits in light of the issues affecting third- and fourth-quarter performance.

The principal factors affecting September through December include political spending; the degree to which automotive advertising rebounds following the apparent settlement of the General Motors Corp. strike; the success of the networks’ fall programming season; and the general economy. These events would have significant impact on the balance of the year, Decherd said.

Robert W. Decherd, Belo’s chairman, president and CEO, said in a statement that revenue growth of 4.7% in the broadcast division was generally in line with expectations.

In its publishing division, which includes the Dallas Morning News and the Providence Journal, revenues grew 3% during the quarter, with advertising revenues gaining almost 4%.

Lower newsprint comparisons and advertiser incentive programs in the second half of the year are expected to boost top line growth in the third and fourth quarters.

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