×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Tribune Earnings Hit By Higher Programming Costs, Advertising Softness

Tribune Media’s second quarter earnings report underscores the importance of growing retransmission consent revenues to broadcast groups at a time when advertising remains soft.

Tribune’s revenue was boosted by a big jump in retrans coin as well as $160 million in proceeds from the sale of its share of the Classified Ventures online advertising service to Gannett Co.

Revenue in Tribune’s broadcast unit climbed 5% from the year-ago quarter to $425.8 million. Retrans revenue alone spiked 78% to $57.1 million, while advertising revenue declined 2.2% to $336.6 million. Political advertising increased to $6.5 million for the quarter but that was more than offset by a $15.6 million year-over-year decline in core advertising.

Even with the retrans windfall, earnings for the broadcast group fell 6% to $140.5 million as WGN America saw programming expenses jump $24.5 million in connection with the launch of original drama series “Salem.”

Tribune Media CEO Peter Liguori said he was “pleased” with the company’s accomplishments in the second quarter, which include the spinoff of its newspaper division into the standalone Tribune Publishing arm.

“The premiere of WGN America’s original series, ‘Salem,’ exceeded our expectations and we have renewed it for a second season,” Liguori said. “While the core advertising market experienced headwinds in the first half of the year, we continue to be encouraged by the strength of our new broadcast scale, as evidenced in our year-over-year retransmission fee increases, and feel positive about the opportunities presented by the political advertising landscape in the second half of 2014.”

More TV

  • Dan Lin's Rideback, MRC Announce Writers

    Dan Lin's Rideback, MRC Announce First Class of Writers and Mentors for TV Incubator

    Rideback, Dan Lin’s production company, and MRC have announced the inaugural class of writers and mentors for their TV incubator.  The new TV writers residency program, which was launched in February, offers a paid, eight-month residency program to a group of writers who have each previously been staffed on series and want to create their [...]

  • CBS Viacom

    CBS and Viacom Move Closer to Merger Talks

    The CBS Corp. board of directors is moving closer to initiating acquisition discussions with Viacom, according to multiple sources close to the situation. The move has been expected for months, although there may still be obstacles on the road to a reunion for the two sides of the Redstone media empire. Price could still be [...]

  • Santa Fe Studios Netflix

    Santa Fe Studios Competes With Other New Mexico Stages for Streaming Business

    Albuquerque Studios entered the spotlight last October when it was purchased by Netflix. While the complex is clearly the jewel in the crown of New Mexico’s production infrastructure, with eight soundstages totaling 132,000 square feet, 100,000 square feet of production offices, a large backlot and support space, it’s not the only modern studio facility in [...]

  • Wahlburgers

    'Wahlburgers' Renewed for 10th and Final Season at A&E

    A&E has renewed “Wahlburgers” for a 10th and final season. The reality series following brothers Mark, Donnie and Paul Wahlberg will debut the new installment at on May 15. A&E has also released a trailer for the season. Season 10 will continue to focus on the Wahlberg brothers as they balance family and their eponymous [...]

  • Game of Thrones Season 8

    From 'Game of Thrones' to 'Big Bang Theory,' Spinoffs Will Keep the Hits Alive

    By this time next year, many of the brightest lights in the current TV universe will cease to shine. Some of the most popular and acclaimed shows are set to air their swan songs this year and during the 2019-20 broadcast season. While programs come and go all the time, the sheer number of iconic [...]

  • Jussie Smollett Empire

    TV Ratings: Jussie Smollett's Final Episode of 'Empire' Season 5 Goes Low

    Last night, Jussie Smollett’s final episode of “Empire” season 5, and potentially his last episode on the show ever, went up in the ratings from previous weeks, but still posted low figures for the series. The episode, in which Smollett’s character Jamal Lyon tied the knot in TV’s first-ever black, gay wedding, returned a 1.1 [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content