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AirMedia Posts Steep 2Q Loss On Higher Costs

SEATTLE (AP) ¿ AirMedia Group Inc., which runs networks of digital screens that carry advertising and content in airports and places ads on airplane TV screens, on Monday reported a second-quarter loss as costs surged as it expanded its business.

AirMedia said it doesn't expect those costs to ease this year, and issued sales guidance below Wall Street expectations. Investors sent shares down 90 cents, or 12.9 percent, to $6.10 in after-hours trading. Earlier, the stock slipped 2 cents to close the regular session at $7.

The Beijing-based company said it lost $7 million, or 11 cents per share, compared with a year-ago profit of $7.3 million, or 11 cents per share. AirMedia said the cost of placing more traditional advertisements like billboards and light boxes in China's Beijing and Shenzhen airports ¿ a deal announced in March ¿ was largely to blame for the loss.

The fees AirMedia pays to airports and airlines more than doubled in the quarter to $28.1 million. The company said it is in the process of renegotiating contracts with major airports, but it expects the fees to reach at least $29.5 million in the current third quarter and $35.5 million in the fourth.

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