With overall revenue up 17% thanks to its digital business segments, Townsquare reported Q3 revenue of $120.6 million, up from $111.3 million in Q3 last year. On the radio side, political was weaker than expected and the automotive category remains a drag.
Broadcast advertising net revenue increased $2.0 million, or 3.4%, as compared to the same period in 2021. Excluding political, broadcast advertising net revenue increased $1.0 million, or 1.8%, to $57.8 million.
CEO Bill Wilson told analysts and investors, as he has many times before, that radio is not expected to be a growth engine at Townsquare. “It is a mature, cash-cow business.” He said he expects local to continue to perform well but added national could get a little worse. He also said he’s not seeing a bounce back in the auto category and doesn’t expect that to happen until late 2023 or early 2024
Townsquare operates radio stations outside the top 50 markets and political was weaker than expected this year because there were not many hotly contested elections in Townsquare markets. Political revenue came in at $1.3 million in Q3, well below 2018 and 2020. The company was expecting a total of $12-$13 million for the year but now says that number will be closer to $7 million.
The digital divisions at Townsquare continue to drive revenue growth. 50% of Townsquare’s revenue and profits now come from digital pushing the company to an all-time revenue and profit 3rd quarter.
Digital Advertising net revenue increased $6.5 million, or 21.3%, and subscription Digital Marketing Solutions net revenue increased $2.1 million, or 9.7%, as compared to the same period in 2021 due in part to the addition of approximately 850 additional net subscribers during the third quarter of 2022.