E.W. Scripps today announced new multiyear affiliation agreements with ABC and CBS in several markets.
The ABC agreement covers all 15 Scripps ABC affiliates serving Bakersfield, California; Baltimore; Boise, Idaho; Buffalo, New York; Cincinnati; Cleveland; Denver; Detroit; Indianapolis; Las Vegas; Phoenix; San Diego; Tampa, Florida; Tucson, Arizona; and Twin Falls, Idaho.
The CBS agreement covers WTVF in Nashville, Tennessee.
"These renewals reinforce our long-standing relationships with two of our most important network partners," said Brian Lawlor, president of Local Media for Scripps, in a statement. "Together, we serve local communities around the country with news, entertainment, sports and other high-quality programming that draws tens of millions of viewers a day. We value our strong, mutually beneficial partnerships with these networks."
The announcement comes along shortly after E.W. Scripps posted improved quarterly numbers for its local media segment.
The local media group’s revenues for the most recent quarter totaled $192 million, up 2.7% year over year. Retransmission revenue increased 6.9% to $70.8 million despite the company having to pay out a one-time refund of $2.1 million to an MVPD that mistakenly overpaid Scripps in 2016 and 2017 on out-of-market subscribers.
The company said the number of subscribers to over-the-top services in its markets hit 350,000 at the end of 2017. Scripps said the growth, coupled with its stable satellite and cable subscriber totals, is driving retransmission revenue.
“In our Local Media segment, we saw nice growth in our over-the-top service subscribers and stabilization in our legacy contracts. We remain on track to meet our full-year retransmission revenue expectations,” E.W. Scripps CEO Adam Symson said in a statement.