SOURCE: Fisher Communications, Inc.

Fisher Communications, Inc.

August 07, 2012 08:00 ET

Fisher Communications Reports Second Quarter 2012

Net Television Revenue Increased 19%; TV Cash Flow Increased 82%

SEATTLE, WA--(Marketwire - Aug 7, 2012) - Fisher Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ: FSCI), a leader in local media innovation, today reported its financial results for the second quarter ended June 30, 2012. For the quarter, earnings per diluted share were $0.48, compared to $0.41 for the second quarter of 2011, and television cash flow increased 82%, or $5.7 million, to $12.6 million.

The Company's second quarter was highlighted by 19% growth in net television revenue compared to the same period in 2011. Net television revenue, excluding political revenue, increased 17% for the same period. The continued strength and market leading positions of Fisher's television stations drove performance in the quarter. Fisher was able to capture a larger share of advertising and earn a significant increase in retransmission revenue during the quarter.

"Fisher's solid performance is a result of playing to our strength," said Colleen B. Brown, Fisher's President and Chief Executive Officer. "The combination of leading broadcast stations and innovative digital solutions, leverages the strength of our local media assets. Through our multiplatform approach, Fisher is deepening its relationship with consumers and providing advertisers with advanced local multiplatform solutions to reach their customers -- these are distinct advantages that benefit all of our stakeholders."

Second Quarter Results

Fisher's consolidated revenue was $42.3 million, up 5% from the second quarter of 2011. Excluding Fisher Plaza revenues from the second quarter of 2011, Fisher's consolidated revenue increased 16% compared to the second quarter of 2011.

The Company's retransmission revenue increased 89% from the second quarter of 2011, reflecting renewals of retransmission consent agreements for the 2012-2014 cycle. Accordingly, the Company's second quarter financial results include approximately $700,000 of retransmission fees attributable to those contracts for the first quarter of 2012. Excluding the $700,000 of retransmission revenue attributable to the first quarter of 2012, total retransmission revenue increased $2.3 million, or 68%, from the second quarter of 2011.

Broadcast cash flow increased 69% to $14.4 million, which reflects the increase in broadcast revenue and the Company's continued focus on expense management.

Direct operating, selling, general and administrative and programming expenses for the second quarter of 2012 were flat compared to the second quarter of 2011. However, last year's second quarter results included expenses related to the Company's 2011 proxy contest and savings related to the Company's revised vacation policy.

EBITDA was $8.9 million in the second quarter of 2012, an increase of 15%, or $1.1 million, from the same period in 2011. Adjusted EBITDA (excluding Plaza rent expense in 2012 and Plaza EBITDA in 2011) was $10.2 million in the second quarter of 2012, an increase of 91%, or $4.9 million, from the same period in 2011. Second quarter 2012 EBITDA included $1.3 million of Fisher Plaza rent expense and last year's second quarter EBITDA included $2.5 million of Plaza EBITDA.

Overview of the Second Quarter of 2012

(All financial comparisons are made to the second quarter of 2011 unless otherwise noted.)

Television:

  • Core TV revenue increased 8% to $25.9 million.
  • Net TV revenue, excluding political revenue, increased 17% to $35.8 million.
  • Retransmission consent revenue increased 89% to $6.3 million.
  • Advertising increased in key categories, including Automotive, Professional Services and Retail, which grew 20%, 14%, and 10%, respectively.
  • Political revenue (net) increased 255% to $943,000.
  • TV cash flow increased 82%, or $5.7 million, to $12.6 million; TV cash flow margin was 34.1%, up from 22.3%.
  • Internet revenue declined $74,000 to $1.3 million. Total Developing Media revenue, including multiplatform internet related revenue (which is reported in TV core advertising revenue) was 8% of TV core revenue for both the second quarter of 2012 and 2011.
  • Developing Media page views were up 52% and unique visitors were up 81% in June 2012 compared to June 2011.

Radio:

  • Radio net revenue decreased 2% to $5.6 million.
  • Radio cash flow grew 12% or $198,000 to $1.8 million and Radio cash flow margin improved to 33.2% from 29.1%.

Balance Sheet and Liquidity:

  • Cash, short-term and long term-investments were $91.9 million at quarter-end, compared to $176.5 million at the end of 2011. Cash used in operating activities for the year of $15.8 million consists of $9.2 million of cash generated from operations offset by $21.7 million in estimated 2011 tax payments, net of refunds received, $1.5 million of debt extinguishment costs and $1.8 million of interest payments on the Company's retired senior notes. All of the Company's short-term and long-term investments are in U.S. Treasuries.
  • The Company remained debt-free, after using its strong cash position to redeem the remaining $61.8 million of outstanding principal for the Company's senior notes in the first quarter of 2012.

Key Operating and Strategic Highlights

  • Fisher television stations ranked either #1 or #2 in the key Adult 25-54 demographic in early evening local news in five out of its six markets during the May 2012 ratings period. Additionally, Fisher television stations ranked #1 or #2 among adults 25-54 in total day share in all its markets.
  • For the second quarter 2012 period, Fisher Radio in Seattle had two of the Top 10 stations in the market during Morning Drive for Adults age 25-54 in average share. KPLZ had the highest rating and share among women 25-54 and KOMO News Radio had the highest rating and share among men age 35+.

Second Quarter Conference Call

Fisher will host a conference call today at 1:00 p.m. (PDT). Senior management will discuss the financial results and host a question and answer session. The dial-in number for the audio conference call is 1-877-261-8992; confirmation code 33025365#. A live audio webcast of the call will be accessible to the public on Fisher's website, www.fsci.com. A recording of the webcast will subsequently be archived on the website and available for replay for one week following the call. An audio replay of the call can be accessed for one week by dialing 1-888-843-7419 and entering confirmation code 33025365#.

Definitions and Disclosures Regarding Non-GAAP Financial Information

The Company reports and discusses its operating results using financial measures consistent with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) and believes this should be the primary basis for evaluating its performance.

The preceding discussion of our results includes a discussion of non-GAAP financial measures such as Television cash flow, Radio cash flow, Broadcast cash flow and Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization (EBITDA) and Adjusted EBITDA. These non-GAAP measures should not be viewed as alternatives or substitutes for GAAP reporting.

The Company believes the presentation of these non-GAAP measures is useful to investors because they are used by lenders to measure the Company's ability to service debt; by industry analysts to determine the market value of stations and their operating performance; and by management to identify the cash available to service debt, make strategic acquisitions and investments, maintain capital assets and fund ongoing operations and working capital needs; and, because they reflect the most up-to-date operating results of the stations inclusive of pending acquisitions, time brokerage agreements or local marketing agreements. Management believes they also provide an additional basis from which investors can establish forecasts and valuations for the Company's business.

Television and radio cash flow are calculated as television and radio segment income (loss) from operations plus amortization of broadcast rights, non-cash charges, Internet and trade expenses minus payments for broadcast rights and Internet revenue. Broadcast cash flow is calculated by adding the Television and radio cash flow.

EBITDA is calculated as income (loss) from operations plus amortization of broadcast rights; depreciation and amortization; stock-based compensation; loss on disposal of property, plant and equipment, net; proxy related costs; and non-cash charges minus payments for broadcast rights; gain on sale of real estate, net; Plaza fire reimbursements, net; and amortization of non-cash benefit resulting from a change in national advertising representation firm.

Adjusted EBITDA excludes Fisher Plaza rent expense in the second quarter of 2012 and Plaza EBITDA in the second quarter of 2011. Plaza EBITDA is calculated as Plaza segment income (loss) from operations. Management believes this presentation of Adjusted EBITDA is useful to investors because it provides investors with a comparable measure given the impact of the disposition of Fisher Plaza.

For a reconciliation of these non-GAAP financial measurements to the GAAP financial results cited in this press release, please see the supplemental tables at the end of this release.

About Fisher Communications, Inc.

Fisher Communications, Inc. is a Seattle-based communications Company that owns and operates 13 full power television stations, 7 low power television stations, and 3 owned radio stations and one managed radio station in the Western United States. The Company also owns and operates Fisher Interactive Network, its online division (including over 120 online sites) and Fisher Pathways, a satellite and fiber transmission provider. For more information about Fisher Communications, Inc., go to www.fsci.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

This news release includes forward-looking statements. We have based these forward-looking statements on our current expectations and projections about future events. Forward-looking statements include information preceded by, followed by, or that includes the words "guidance," "believes," "expects," "intends," "anticipates," "could," or similar expressions. For these statements, the Company claims the protection of the safe harbor for forward-looking statements contained in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The forward-looking statements contained in this news release, including, among other things, statements related to changes in revenue, cash flow and operating expenses, involve risks and uncertainties and are subject to change based on various important factors, including the impact of changes in national and regional economies, the competitiveness of political races and voter initiatives, successful integration of acquired television stations (including achievement of synergies and cost reductions), pricing fluctuations in local and national advertising, future regulatory actions and conditions in the television stations' operating areas, competition from others in the broadcast television markets served by the Company, volatility in programming costs, the effects of governmental regulation of broadcasting, industry consolidation, technological developments and major world news events. Unless required by law, we undertake no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. In light of these risks, uncertainties and assumptions, the forward-looking events discussed in this news release might not occur. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this release. For more details on factors that could affect these expectations, please see the risk factors in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2011, which we have filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Fisher Communications, Inc. and Subsidiaries  
Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations  
(Unaudited)  
                     
    Three months ended         Six months ended      
(in thousands, except per-    June 30,   %     June 30,   %  
 share amounts)    2012   2011   Change     2012   2011   Change  
Revenue   $ 42,270   $ 40,350   5 %   $ 76,202   $ 77,902   (2 %)
Operating expenses                                    
  Direct operating costs     15,932     17,217   7 %     32,588     34,891   7 %
  Selling, general and administrative expenses     15,081     13,417   (12 %)     29,635     28,167   (5 %)
  Amortization of broadcast rights     2,436     2,905   16 %     4,893     5,875   17 %
  Depreciation and amortization     1,748     2,672   35 %     3,505     5,330   34 %
  Loss (gain) on sale of real estate, net     209     (4,089 ) (105 %)     (164 )   (4,089 ) (96 %)
  Plaza fire reimbursements, net     -     (105 ) (100 %)     -     (183 ) (100 %)
  Total operating expenses     35,406     32,017   (11 %)     70,457     69,991   (1 %)
Income from continuing operations     6,864     8,333   (18 %)     5,745     7,911   (27 %)
Loss on extinguishment of senior notes, net     -     (948 )         (1,482 )   (1,058 )    
Other income, net     64     100           94     180      
Interest expense     (10 )   (1,878 )         (276 )   (4,125 )    
Income from continuing operations before income taxes     6,918     5,607           4,081     2,908      
Provision for income taxes     2,636     2,065           1,663     1,085      
Income from continuing operations, net of income taxes     4,282     3,542           2,418     1,823      
Income from discontinued operations, net of income taxes     -     74           -     66      
Net income   $ 4,282   $ 3,616         $ 2,418   $ 1,889      
                                     
                                     
Net income per share:                                    
  From continuing operations   $ 0.48   $ 0.40         $ 0.27   $ 0.21      
  From discontinued operations     -     0.01           -     0.01      
  Net income per share   $ 0.48   $ 0.41         $ 0.27   $ 0.21      
                                     
Net income per share assuming dilution:                                    
  From continuing operations   $ 0.48   $ 0.40         $ 0.27   $ 0.21      
  From discontinued operations     -     0.01           -     0.01      
  Net income per share assuming dilution   $ 0.48   $ 0.41         $ 0.27   $ 0.21      
                                     
                                     
Weighted average shares outstanding     8,874     8,834           8,860     8,822      
Weighted average shares outstanding assuming dilution     8,928     8,895           8,936     8,892      
                                     
                                     
 
 
Fisher Communications, Inc. and Subsidiaries
Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets
(Unaudited)
         
    June 30,   December 31,
(in thousands)   2012   2011
ASSETS            
Current assets            
  Cash and cash equivalents   $ 8,415   $ 143,017
  Short-term debt security investments     55,092     33,481
  Receivables, net     31,482     32,402
  Income taxes receivable     -     117
  Deferred income taxes, net     1,825     1,825
  Prepaid expenses and other     2,102     3,062
  Broadcast rights     2,020     6,789
    Total current assets     100,936     220,693
Restricted cash     3,603     3,594
Long-term debt security investments     28,400     -
Cash surrender value of life insurance and annuity contracts     17,676     17,278
Goodwill, net     13,293     13,293
Intangible assets, net     40,190     40,307
Other assets     5,722     5,006
Deferred income taxes, net     3,329     3,367
Assets held for sale     -     658
Property, plant and equipment, net     39,492     40,921
Total assets   $ 252,641   $ 345,117
             
LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY            
Current Liabilities            
  Current maturities of long-term debt   $ -   $ 61,834
  Accounts payable     1,845     3,754
  Accrued payroll and related benefits     3,222     4,660
  Interest payable     -     1,556
  Broadcast rights payable     1,648     6,541
  Income taxes payable     1,276     21,468
  Current portion of accrued retirement benefits     1,302     1,302
  Other current liabilities     5,982     8,708
    Total current liabilities     15,275     109,823
Deferred income     8,943     10,036
Accrued retirement benefits     20,450     20,525
Other liabilities     3,112     2,688
    Total liabilities     47,780     143,072
Total stockholders' equity     204,861     202,045
Total liabilities and stockholders' equity   $ 252,641   $ 345,117
             
             
   
   
Fisher Communications, Inc. and Subsidiaries  
Condensed Consolidated Statements of Cash Flow  
(Unaudited)  
       
    Six months ended June 30,  
(in thousands)   2012     2011  
Operating activities                
  Net income   $ 2,418     $ 1,889  
  Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash provided by (used in) operating activities                
    Depreciation and amortization     3,505       5,330  
    Deferred income taxes, net     37       21  
    Loss on extinguishment of senior notes, net     594       1,058  
    Loss in operations of equity investees     74       84  
    Loss on disposal of property, plant and equipment, net     20       52  
    Gain on sale of real estate, net     (164 )     (4,089 )
    Gain on sale of radio station, net     -       (48 )
    Amortization of deferred financing fees     19       170  
    Amortization of deferred gain on sale of Fisher Plaza     (379 )     -  
    Amortization of debt security investment premium     85       -  
    Amortization of non-cash contract termination fee     (731 )     (731 )
    Amortization of broadcast rights     4,893       5,875  
    Payments for broadcast rights     (5,027 )     (6,057 )
    Stock-based compensation     826       733  
  Change in operating assets and liabilities, net                
    Receivables     920       1,358  
    Prepaid expenses and other     961       408  
    Cash surrender value of life insurance and annuity contracts     (398 )     2,019  
    Other assets     96       136  
    Accounts payable, accrued payroll and related                
    benefits and other current liabilities     (2,423 )     (2,595 )
    Interest payable     (1,556 )     (651 )
    Income taxes receivable and payable     (20,075 )     1,662  
    Accrued retirement benefits     (11 )     31  
    Other liabilities     546       (428 )
      Net cash provided by (used in) operating activities     (15,770 )     6,227  
Investing activities                
  Investment in equity investee     (32 )     (77 )
  Purchase of debt security investments     (82,733 )     -  
  Purchase of investment in a radio station     (750 )     -  
  Purchase of option to acquire a radio station     (615 )     -  
  Purchase of radio stations     -       (113 )
  Purchase of property, plant and equipment     (5,731 )     (3,009 )
  Proceeds from sale of debt security investments     7,628       -  
  Proceeds from maturity of debt security investments     25,000       -  
  Proceeds from sale of radio station     -       48  
  Proceeds from sale of real estate     825       4,164  
      Net cash provided by (used in) investing activities     (56,408 )     1,013  
Financing activities                
  Repurchase of senior notes     (61,834 )     (26,600 )
  Repurchase of common stock     (86 )     -  
  Shares settled on vesting of stock rights     (433 )     (273 )
  Proceeds from exercise of stock options     25       75  
  Payments on capital lease obligations     (96 )     (89 )
      Net cash used in financing activities     (62,424 )     (26,887 )
Net decrease in cash and cash equivalents     (134,602 )     (19,647 )
Cash and cash equivalents, beginning of period     143,017       52,945  
Cash and cash equivalents, end of period   $ 8,415     $ 33,298  
                 
                 
   
   
Fisher Communications, Inc. and Subsidiaries  
GAAP to Non-GAAP Reconciliations  
(Unaudited, in thousands)  
   
The following table provides a reconciliation of income (loss) from operations (GAAP) to EBITDA (non-GAAP) and Adjusted EBITDA (non-GAAP) in each of the periods presented:  
             
    Three months
ended June 30,
    Six months
ended June 30,
 
    2012     2011     2012     2011  
                                 
Income from continuing operations   $ 6,864     $ 8,333     $ 5,745     $ 7,911  
                                 
  Adjustments:                                
    Amortization of broadcast rights     2,436       2,905       4,893       5,875  
    Payments for broadcast rights     (2,376 )     (2,864 )     (5,027 )     (6,057 )
    Depreciation and amortization     1,748       2,672       3,505       5,330  
    Stock-based compensation     375       433       826       733  
    Loss on disposal of property, plant and equipment, net     9       18       20       52  
    Loss (gain) on sale of real estate, net     209       (4,089 )     (164 )     (4,089 )
    Plaza fire reimbursements, net     -       (105 )     -       (183 )
    Proxy related costs     34       850       79       1,624  
    Amortization of non-cash benefit resulting from change in national advertising representation firm     (366 )     (366 )     (731 )     (731 )
                                 
EBITDA (Non-GAAP)   $ 8,933     $ 7,787     $ 9,146     $ 10,465  
                                 
    Fisher Plaza rent expense     1,253       -       2,524       -  
    Plaza EBITDA     -       (2,451 )     -       (4,652 )
                                 
Adjusted EBITDA (Non-GAAP)   $ 10,186     $ 5,336     $ 11,670     $ 5,813  
                                 
                                 
   
   
The following table provides a reconciliation of television income (loss) from operations (GAAP) to television cash flow (non-GAAP) in each of the periods presented:  
             
    Three months
ended June 30,
    Six months
ended June 30,
 
    2012     2011     2012     2011  
                                 
Television segment income from continuing operations   $ 12,373     $ 6,775     $ 17,452     $ 11,430  
                                 
  Adjustments:                                
    Amortization of broadcast rights     2,436       2,905       4,893       5,875  
    Payments for broadcast rights     (2,376 )     (2,864 )     (5,027 )     (6,057 )
    Net trade and internet loss     117       68       511       289  
                                 
Television broadcast cash flow (Non-GAAP)   $ 12,550     $ 6,884     $ 17,829     $ 11,537  
                                 
Television broadcast cash flow as a percentage of television segment revenue     34.1 %     22.3 %     27.0 %     19.2 %
                                 
Television segment revenue   $ 36,778     $ 30,934     $ 65,937     $ 60,035  
                                 
                                 
   
   
The following table provides a reconciliation of radio income (loss) from operations (GAAP) to radio cash flow (non-GAAP) in each of the periods presented:  
             
    Three months
ended June 30,
    Six months
ended June 30,
 
    2012     2011     2012     2011  
                                 
Radio segment income from continuing operations   $ 1,835     $ 1,710     $ 2,633     $ 1,882  
                                 
  Adjustments:                                
    Net trade loss     14       (59 )     88       30  
                                 
Radio broadcast cash flow (Non-GAAP)   $ 1,849     $ 1,651     $ 2,721     $ 1,912  
                                 
Radio broadcast cash flow as a percentage of radio segment revenue     33.2 %     29.1 %     26.4 %     18.2 %
                                 
Radio segment revenue   $ 5,566     $ 5,673     $ 10,299     $ 10,532  
                                 
                                 
   
   
The following table provides television net revenue comparisons in each of the periods presented:  
                             
    Three months ended June 30,   %     Six months ended June 30,   %  
    2012   2011   Change     2012   2011   Change  
Core advertising (local and national)   $ 25,943   $ 24,052   8 %   $ 48,157   $ 46,803   3 %
Political     943     266   255 %     1,462     354   313 %
Internet     1,298     1,372   (5 %)     2,580     2,550   1 %
Retransmission     6,269     3,315   89 %     9,846     6,617   49 %
Trade, barter and other     2,325     1,929   21 %     3,892     3,711   5 %
Television segment net revenue   $ 36,778   $ 30,934   19 %   $ 65,937   $ 60,035   10 %
                                     
Television segment net revenue, excluding political   $ 35,835   $ 30,668   17 %   $ 64,475   $ 59,681   8 %
                                     
                                     
   
   
The following table provides radio net revenue comparisons in each of the periods presented:  
                             
    Three months ended June 30,   %     Six months ended June 30,   %  
    2012   2011   Change     2012   2011   Change  
Core advertising (local and national)   $ 5,284   $ 5,276   0 %   $ 9,742   $ 9,892   (2 %)
Political     18     94   (81 %)     58     127   (54 %)
Trade, barter and other     264     303   (13 %)     499     513   (3 %)
Radio segment net revenue   $ 5,566   $ 5,673   (2 %)   $ 10,299   $ 10,532   (2 %)
                                     
Radio segment net revenue, excluding political   $ 5,548   $ 5,579   (1 %)   $ 10,241   $ 10,405   (2 %)
                                     
                                     

Contact Information

  • Contacts:
    Sard Verbinnen & Co
    Paul Kranhold, Ron Low or David Isaacs
    (415) 618-8750