Tegna Expects Higher 1Q Earnings on 6% Revenue Gain

Tegna president and CEO Dave Lougee
Tegna CEO Dave Lougee (Image credit: Tegna)

Tegna released preliminary financial results, forecasting a 6% increase in revenue in the first quarter and an increase in the high 20% range for the second quarter over last year’s early pandemic levels.

First quarter net income is expected to be $113 million, or 51 cents per share, compared to $86 million, or 39 cents per share, a year ago. That’s at the high end of the company’s previously reported expectations, Tegna said.

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It said advertising and marketing services revenues would be up by a stronger-than-expected 9%.

The record results come as Tenga management is being pressured by shareholder Standard General. Standard General has criticized Tegna’s management’s strategy and financial results. On April 8, it outlined charges of racism within the company in documents filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission.

Last month, Tegna announced it was increasing its dividend by 36%.

Tegna had an exceptionally strong start to the year, with a record first quarter for revenue, net income and adjusted EBITDA. "We will meet guidance on all first quarter metrics, and are raising our full-year 2020 - 2021 free cash flow guidance, while lowering our expected year-end net leverage ratio," said CEO Dave Lougee.

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"Our expectations for continued growth and value creation are evident in our second quarter guidance as well as our updated full year 2021 guidance," Lougee said.

 "We view this as another solid pronouncement from TGNA where quarterly numbers continue to grind higher with each subsequent print," said analyst Steven Cahall of Wells Fargo.  

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.