RICHMOND, Va., March 5, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Media General, Inc. (NYSE: MEG), a local broadcast television and digital media company, is participating today in the Deutsche Bank 2013 dbAccess Media, Internet & Telecom Conference. George Mahoney, president and chief executive officer, and Jim Woodward, vice president-finance and chief financial officer, will present from 4:05-4:40 p.m. EST in a Q&A discussion with Deutsche Bank equity analyst Matthew Chesler and will meet with institutional investors throughout the day. The presentation will be simultaneously webcast and will be accessible via a link on the home page of Media General's website at www.mediageneral.com. A replay of the webcast will be available on Media General's website and through ThomsonReuters' Street Events. Media General is confirming and expanding its previous guidance.
First Quarter 2013 Revenues
Political revenues are expected to be approximately $400,000, compared with $6.2 million in the first quarter of 2012.
Super Bowl revenues on the company's CBS stations were $1.2 million and increased by 33% compared with the last time the Super Bowl aired on CBS in 2010. In 2012, Super Bowl revenues were $2.8 million on the company's NBC stations, which are located in larger markets and which typically generate higher revenues.
Core revenues are expected to increase approximately 2% compared to the first quarter of 2012 (excluding all Political and Super Bowl revenues). Automotive advertising is expected to be even with the first quarter of 2012, with each successive month in 2013 showing greater strength. The Restaurants/Fast Food category is expected to increase in the 2013 first quarter compared to last year's first quarter.
Retransmission revenues are expected to increase 50%. Digital Media revenues are expected to increase 15%.
Total net revenues, excluding all Political revenues, are expected to increase 7-8%, compared with the first quarter of 2012.
Starting with the full-year 2013, Media General's fiscal year will conform to a conventional calendar year (Jan. 1 – Dec. 31). Previously, the company's fiscal year ended on the last Sunday in December, a newspaper industry practice. The first quarter of 2012 began on December 26, 2011 and ended on March 26, 2012. The first quarter of 2013 began on January 1 and will end on March 31.
Media General's near-term focus is on organic growth and reducing its cost of capital.
Media General continues to evaluate the options for refinancing at a lower interest rate its 11.75% Senior Notes that are callable on or before February 2014. The company will have the option of using any cash on the balance sheet at the time of refinancing to reduce the total amount to be refinanced. Every one percent reduction in the interest rate would yield interest expense savings of approximately $3 million.
Media General expects its 2013 results will meaningfully exceed the prior odd-numbered year of 2011 when EBITDA from continuing operations was $56 million and Broadcast Cash Flow was $89 million. The broadcast industry customarily compares odd-numbered years to odd years and even-numbered years to even years due to the impact of Political and Olympics revenues in the even-numbered years.
As expected in an odd-numbered year in the broadcast television industry, total revenues will decrease from 2012, mostly due to the absence of non-recurring Political revenues. Political revenues in 2013 are expected to be approximately $5 million, compared with $64 million in 2012.
All Media General stations have in place revenue initiatives and new business development plans focused on driving growth in core Local revenues. These initiatives include successful programs that have helped offset the absence of Political revenues in prior odd-numbered years and ones that have already made a positive contribution in the first quarter of 2013, including incentive trips and other local advertising promotions and community campaigns.
Corporate expense will decrease by approximately 35% from last year, based primarily on a workforce reduction that was completed in 2012.
Compensation expense growth includes a 2% merit increase and an approximate 7% increase in benefits expense, due in part to the impact of the Affordable Care Act regulations.
Higher NBC affiliate fees will be offset by increased Retransmission revenues.
As the year unfolds, stations may fill open positions as well as invest in new positions for news staff, including digital resources, to support ratings and revenue growth objectives. Stations may also invest in greater marketing and promotion to enhance local competitiveness. Stations will adjust or defer expenses as appropriate to align business conditions with profit goals.
Uses of Cash
Media General entered 2013 with a cash balance of $37 million. The company does not expect to carry an outstanding balance in 2013 on its revolving credit facility, which has availability of $45 million. Media General continues to expect that cash provided by operations in 2013 will cover interest payments of $68 million, capital expenditures of $15 million and a pension plan contribution of $4.5 million.
Forward-Looking Statements This news release contains forward-looking statements that are subject to various risks and uncertainties and should be understood in the context of the company's publicly available reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Media General's future performance could differ materially from its current expectations.
About Media General Media General is a leading provider of news, information and entertainment across 18 network-affiliated broadcast television stations and their associated digital media and mobile platforms. The company's stations serve consumers and advertisers in strong local markets, primarily in the Southeast. Media General's network affiliates include eight NBC stations, eight CBS stations, one ABC station and one CW station. One-third of the company's stations operate in the Top 50 markets in the United States. Media General's stations reach more than one-third of TV households in the Southeast and more than 8 percent of U.S. TV households. Media General entered the television business in 1955 when it launched WFLA-TV in Tampa, Florida, as an NBC affiliate. Today, WFLA is the company's largest TV station, operating in the 14th largest DMA in the United States.
Contact Media General
Additional information about Media General is available on its website www.mediageneral.com or by contacting Lou Anne J. Nabhan, Vice President-Corporate Communications, at (804) 887-5120 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
SOURCE Media General, Inc.