Emmis CEO Jeff Smulyan said Los Angeles continues to be the Emmis weak spot, as the company is still dealing with the defection of Big Boy to iHeartMedia a year ago. Net revenue for March, April, and May came in at $42.7 million compared to $42.6 million in 2015. Excluding Power 106 in Los Angeles, Emmis would have been up 5%. Smulyan said he’s encouraged by the pacings in Los Angeles and the company expects to overcome iHeart’s Hip Hop challenger around September of this year.
Emmis’ two New York stations did “exceptionally well,” up 11% in a market up 4% overall, according to Smulyan. Looking forward, Emmis is pacing down 5% in its next quarter (June, July, and August). June finished down 5%, July is pacing down, and August is pacing up. Emmis took in $860K in political advertising in March, April, and May, and Smulyan is “somewhat optimistic” about political advertising for the radio industry for the rest of the year. He noted that Trump is not raising money like a typical candidate would, relying on coverage from the press to get his message out.