Commenting on the results chairman and CEO Stephen M. Lacy said “We are pleased that continued strong execution of our multiplatform strategy — including our growing and profitable digital activities — has Meredith on track to deliver record revenue and operating profit for full-year fiscal 2017.”
Performance in the third quarter of fiscal 2017 compared to the prior-year quarter included:
• Total company digital advertising revenues grew nearly 25 per cent to a third quarter record. National Media Group digital advertising increased 27 per cent and represented nearly 30 per cent of its total advertising. Local Media Group digital advertising rose nearly 10 per cent. Traffic across Meredith’s digital and mobile sites grew to an average of nearly 90 million unique visitors per month.
• National Media Group operating profit grew nearly 20 per cent to $41 million, and was up eight per cent excluding special items in the prior-year period. Total revenue increased to $283 million. Advertising revenues were off one percent, but increased on a comparable basis as growth in digital advertising more than offset expected print ad declines. Meredith’s National Media brands grew their reach to more than 110 million unduplicated consumers, including more than 70 per cent of U.S. millennial women.
• Local Media Group revenues increased to $142 million. Growth in retransmission-related revenues offset the effects of cyclical political advertising revenues and the Super Bowl airing on Fox in February 2017, compared to CBS in 2016. Meredith’s CBS affiliates have a larger reach than its Fox affiliates.
“Meredith continues to fire on all cylinders, generating strong profits while increasing our consumer reach across multiple platforms,” said Meredith President and chief operating officer Tom Harty. “This includes rapid expansion of our digital offerings to consumers and advertisers alike; launching new products such as The Magnolia Journal; adding newscasts across our television station portfolio; and growing non-advertising sources of revenue such as retransmission fees, brand licensing and e-commerce.”
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