In announcing second quarter financial results, Cumulus Media Chair/CEO Lew Dickey said the integration of Citadel, investment in growth and deleveraging are the broadcaster’s top priorities. “We are making excellent progress on all three fronts.”
Overall, Cumulus pro forma revenues dropped 3% — to roughly $292 million — for the second quarter. The broadcasters’ cash revenues dropped 2.3% and trade revenues fell 25.7%, for an average decline of 3.1%.
On July 31, the company completed its previously announced sale of 55 stations in 11 markets to Townsquare Media in exchange for 10 of Townsquare radio stations in Bloomington, Ill. and Peoria, Ill., plus some $115.8 million in cash. The deal was part of Cumulus’ efforts to focus on radio stations in top markets.
Direct operating expenses for the second quarter increased $133.4 million, or 378.3%, to $168.7 million, compared to $35.3 million for the same period a year ago. This increase reflects the impact of direct operating expenses from adding the Citadel stations in the past year in addition to a $1.3 million increase in broadcast rights.
Net revenues for the second quarter increased $218.8 million, or 351.5%, to $281 million, compared to $62.2 million for Q2, 2011. This increase reflects the impact of net revenues from Cumulus Media Partners and Citadel Broadcasting Corp., as well as a $2.7 million increase in political advertising.
Revenue growth was partially offset by short term revenue impacts because of format changes in some markets, general downward trends in the overall macroeconomic environment and reduced use of trade advertising on acquired stations.