In its first full quarter after acquiring Media General, Nexstar Media saw its revenues rise a whopping 139% to $626 million, a record for the company.
For the second quarter, Nexstar’s record revenue boost also helped drive operating income to $139 million and net income to $48 million.
The record revenues and profits come after Nexstar in January closed its deal for Media General and divested 13 television stations. The results today from Nexstar reflect one-time M&A expenses that totaled $6.1 million for the quarter and $53.9 million for the first half of 2017.
“Our first full quarter of operations including the Media General assets combined with organic core advertising, distribution and digital media revenue growth and our focus on managing operations for current and future cash flow growth, resulted in all of our nonpolitical revenue sources posting triple-digit second-quarter increases. Notably, 51% of our second-quarter gross revenue was derived from non-core advertising revenue sources. The ongoing shift of our revenue mix reflects our long-term initiatives to build scale and diversify revenue through our focus on high growth retransmission and digital opportunities,” said Nexstar Media president and CEO Perry Sook in a statement.
Nexstar’s second-quarter core television ad revenue rose 146.5% but was outpaced by a 157.9% rise in retransmission fee revenue and a 157.4% increase in digital media revenue. Combined second-quarter digital media and retransmission fee revenue of $317.1 million was up 157.8% annually and made up for 50.6% of Nexstar’s net revenue.
Nexstar also highlighted its second-quarter repurchase activity that reduced its basic share count to 46.2 million, and produced refinancing-related interest savings that increased its average annual net income expectations and free cash flow guidance for in the 2017/2018 cycle rising to approximately $574 million.
On the same day as its earnings announcement, Nexstar also said it had entered a deal to acquire all nonspectrum assets for WLWC-TV, the CW affiliate in Providence, Rhode Island, for $4.1 million from OTA Broadcasting.