Tribune Media (TRCO) - Get Tribune Media Co. Class A Report on Friday reported better-than-expected fourth-quarter profit thanks to strong advertising revenue, particularly during the U.S. elections in November.
The TV station operator said net income for its fourth quarter was $132.8 million, or $1.50 a share, compared to $328.8 million, or $3.72 a share, a year earlier.
Analysts surveyed by FactSet had expected fourth-quarter per-share earnings of $1.33 a share.
For the full year, Tribune said net income was $412.6 million, or $4.67 a share, vs. $194.1 million, or $2.20 a share, in 2017.
Consolidated adjusted earnings before income, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA), a figure particularly relevant among media companies, increased 38% to $233.3 million for the fourth quarter and increased 47% to $650.8 million for the full year, Tribune said.
The results were "powered by exceptionally strong political advertising revenues, significant growth in retransmission and carriage fee revenues, and a meaningful contribution to our operating results from our cable network, WGN America," Tribune Media CEO Peter Kern said in a statement.
"Despite substantial political displacement, core advertising remained solid, delivering positive year-over-year growth from Election Day to the end of the year - a trend we expect to continue in the first quarter of 2019," he said.
Tribune Media's 2008 bankruptcy was the largest in American media history. The company emerged from bankruptcy in 2012.