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Q1 Flat for Entercom

Field says “unusually challenging winter weather” impacted many markets

Entercom Communications reported a flat first quarter. Net revenues were $78.2 million, compared to $78.360 million in the first quarter of 2013.

Excluding the effect of the nonrenewal of the Boston Celtics radio broadcasts, first quarter revenues were up, according to Entercom President/CEO David Field. That’s despite the “unusually challenging winter weather that impacted many of our markets. We are increasingly enthusiastic about the radio industry’s future growth outlook based on a number of recent developments, most notably the release of the Nielsen Catalina study which showed radio generating outstanding ROI results across 10 major national brands, significantly outperforming other competitive media.”

Station expenses were also flat at $57.8 million. Station operating income was flat as well at $20.4 million. Adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization declined slightly to $15.1 million. Adjusted net income per share more than doubled to $0.05. Free cash flow increased 19% to $4.7 million.

Entercom launched SmartReach Digital during the quarter, a new division that the company hopes will attract advertising by helping local businesses navigate their digital marketing options. As of April 1, Entercom has rolled out SmartReach Digital in six markets and additional markets will be added in the coming months, we’ve reported.