Pro-forma revenue for Beasley’s 4th quarter declined 6.9% or $4.9 million. Eighty percent ($3.9 million) of that decline was due to political revenue in 2016 that did not return in 2017. National ad revenue, automotive and retail were weak in the quarter. Consumer Services was a strong category. CFO Marie Tedesco says more than 70% of the revenue decline was offset by a reduction in expenses in thee quarters.
Overall, Beasley saw a revenue increase of $4.8 million, or 9.0%, in the quarter, but there are still a lot of moving parts. The increase reflects the inclusion of stations acquired from Greater Media in Boston, Philadelphia, Detroit, and New Jersey, partially offset by the disposition of the Charlotte and Greenville-New Bern-Jacksonville stations and strong non-recurring political advertising revenue recorded in the year ago fourth quarter.
CEO Caroline Beasley said there was an issue in Boston where the company did a swap with Entercom, picking up The Sports Hub (WBZ). She said revenue was down because ad placement was at a standstill due to the Entercom/CBS merger.
Beasley also told investors and analysts that the company will no longer report its numbers on a pro-forma basis. And the company will be launching phase two of its new mobile apps in the second quarter of 2018, which, by the way is pacing up slightly.