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Cumulus Gets Some Debt Relief, Posts Q1 Revenue Decline

Berner said restructuring provides “additional time and flexibility” to meet its goals

Cumulus Media said a successful restructuring of its capital structure has taken some pressure off of its debt burdens.

“With the advertising environment still unsettled,” said President/CEO Mary Berner, “these new terms provide us additional time and flexibility to execute against our key business priorities — accelerating digital growth, reducing fixed costs, and continuing to de-lever our balance sheet — each of which is foundational to our ability to build long-term shareholder value.”

She said the company was “thrilled” to secure five-year maturities with favorable terms through a debt exchange and an expansion and extension of asset-based loans.

“This is an excellent outcome for the company especially given the generally difficult financing environment for legacy media companies,” Berner said.

She said Cumulus extended its maturities to 2029, reduced its principal amount of outstanding debt by $33 million, obtained “attractive” interest rates, maintained a structure free of financial maintenance covenants, and increased capacity on its asset-based loan facility by 25%.

“The importance of these transactions is underscored by the continuing choppiness in the macroeconomic environment. While our Q1 revenue was in line with guidance and a marked improvement from 2023 trends, it is also reflective of the uncertainty that continues to weigh on advertisers.”

Cumulus released its first-quarter operating results. It posted total net revenue of $200.1 million, a decline of 2.7% from a year ago, though it noted that this was “a sequential improvement versus Q4’s year-over-year performance.”

Broadcast revenue, including both spot and network, was down 5.6% from a year ago. Digital revenue was a bright spot in Q1, up 7.3% to $34.4 million, 17% of total company revenue.

The company recorded a net loss in the quarter of $14.2 million compared to a net loss of $21.5 million a year earlier. It said it also “continued to improve operating leverage by reducing fixed costs by approximately $4 million.”