McClatchy posts lower second-quarter profit

Published: Friday, Jul. 26, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 6B
Last Modified: Friday, Jul. 26, 2013 - 10:33 am

Despite progress in its digital initiatives, The McClatchy Co. reported lower profits Thursday as the newspaper industry struggles with a prolonged slide in advertising.

Sacramento-based McClatchy, which owns The Bee and 29 other papers, said second-quarter profits fell to $11.1 million from $16.1 million a year earlier.

Those figures didn't include certain one-time adjustments. With adjustments thrown in, bottom-line net income dropped to $11.8 million, from $26.9 million. Per-share earnings dropped to 14 cents from 31 cents.

Total ad revenue fell 7.6 percent from a year ago, due in part to a decline in holiday spending. "Last year, Mother's Day and Memorial Day advertising were stronger," said President and Chief Executive Pat Talamantes in a call with investment analysts.

Beyond that, newspapers and other traditional media are trying to cope with competition from the Internet and other sources.

In the latest quarter, McClatchy print ad sales fell 8.7 percent and digital ad revenue was flat. But there was a 10.6 percent gain in "digital only" revenue from advertisers and subscribers who don't purchase the print editions.

McClatchy's Plus Program, which offers subscriptions to the company's websites, has picked up 25,000 subscribers since it debuted last year. Talamantes said Plus is on track to generate $25 million in new revenue in 2013.

Thanks in part to digital subscriptions, circulation revenue grew 4.8 percent during the quarter. Total revenue fell 3.5 percent, to $308.8 million. The decline was 3.8 percent in the first quarter.

McClatchy shares closed up 3 cents at $3.09 on the New York Stock Exchange.

Call The Bee's Dale Kasler, (916) 321-1066. Follow him on Twitter @dakasler.

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