Sinclair Revenue Up 28% in Second Quarter

Sinclair Broadcast Group reported net broadcast revenues in the second quarter of $279.3 million, an increase of 28.4% versus the prior year period. The broadcaster had operating income of $84.3 million in the three-month period, as compared to $71.9 million in the previous second quarter.

"The first half of 2013 has been very successful for the company, not only with respect to the company's results but on growing our platform through additional acquisitions of broadcast assets, especially our most recently announced planned acquisition of the Allbritton stations and their local news cable/satellite channel," commented David Smith, president and CEO of Sinclair. "Since April 1, 2013, we have announced definitive agreements for the acquisition of 35 additional stations bringing the total number of acquired or announced stations in the past two years to 91. The effect is to not only grow our national footprint and reach, but to unlock operating synergies, gain access to valuable spectrum, and build a platform whereby we can expand content offerings and shape the future of the broadcast industry. We are excited about the successes we have achieved and the additional value that we have created and anticipate creating for our shareholders."

Political revenues were $1.5 million in the second quarter, versus $11.4 million in second quarter of 2012. Local net broadcast revenues were up 35.9% in the quarter while national net broadcast revenues grew 7%.

On a same station basis, excluding political revenues, local net broadcast revenues were up 12.5%, while national net broadcast revenues were up 4.3%, versus the second quarter of 2012.

On May 1, Sinclair closed on its acquisition of four stations formerly owned by Cox Media Group for $99 million. On June 3, Sinclair closed on the purchase of the non-license assets and began an agreement to provide sales services to WUTB Baltimore with Fox Television Stations for $2.4 million. Also in June, the broadcaster agreed to acquire four stations owned by TTBG LLC for $115.35 million, as well as the broadcast equipment manufacturer Dielectric.

In July, Sinclair agreed to acquire the Allbritton stations and the NewsChannel 8 cable net for $985 million.

Effective July 15, 2013, Sinclair terminated its contract with web services firm Inergize Digital.

Sinclair expects third quarter 2013 station net broadcast revenues to come in at $270.5 million-$275.5 million, up 20.2%-22.4% as compared to third quarter 2012 results. Excluding the acquisitions, same station revenues are estimated to be up 8.8%-11.4%.

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.