Revenue: $2.5 billion
Loss: $277 million
Toronto-based Rogers lost C$434.3 million ($277.9 million) at year’s end, compared with net earnings the year previous of $90.4 million. A 40% jump in interest costs (to $275.4 million) and a 25% increase in depreciation and amortization (to a whopping $589.3 million) were the main culprits as increased capital expenditures upped the company’s long-term debt from $2.56 billion to $3.2 billion.
No doubt acquiring a baseball team seemed a wonderful investment for a company with a sports specialty channel — Rogers bought control of the Toronto Blue Jays in late 2000, around which time it upped its stake in specialty channel Sportsnet to 80% — but that has struck out. Rogers footed $52 million of Blue Jays operating losses in 2001 and expects to kick in $55 million more in 2002, and one Rogers exec has been quoted as saying the company does not plan to put up with this kind of performance indefinitely.
Although the company’s share price entered and exited 2001 on a similar note, $16.32 and $18.40, respectively, the company’s stock price has, in two years, lost more than 60% of its value.