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Gannett (GCI)

Participants
Ashley Higgins Investor Relations
Mike Reed Chief Executive Officer
Doug Horne Chief Financial Officer
Call transcript
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Operator

Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for standing by, and welcome to the Gannett Second Quarter Earnings Call. At this time, all participants are in a listen-only mode. I would now like to hand the conference over to your speaker, Ashley Higgins, Head of Investor Relations. Thank you. Please go ahead.

Ashley Higgins

Natalya. you, Thank and to everyone, for our joining Good at thank Gannett’s today discuss results. second call morning, you quarter XXXX today’s Mike be Officer; Chief call and Officer. on Financial Executive Horne, and Reed, Chief Doug Presenting Chairman will

financial During quarter. for discuss the results this will call, we Gannett’s

have our navigate Gannett earlier we press you earnings supplement, will find website, release. If an you in to that the posted addition to

performance. detail call, be as on it on referencing this with you will quarter’s We the additional it provides today

please remind me this is begin, that we Before being let call you recorded.

read In in addition, and this the in based call Gannett’s SEC. statements to encourage materially described respect well the upon as events Risk with the presentation Factors to discussed could are events filings and are the forward-looking statements made those statements that results with during future We from results disclaimer Actual made as differ current expectations. today. forward-looking you

some call financial be forma non-GAAP will pro we addition, today. discussing In and the during information

find reconciliations earnings supplement. You the to Media presents forma information basis. a comparable pro and in of Legacy most consolidated measures can Gannett measures The on GAAP our non-GAAP Legacy the

an Gannett’s interest offer audiocast remind I’d copyrighted I call to an of Lastly, to nothing solicitation to offer in Reed, the CEO. like any and of that, without turn on may sell to Mike that purchase Gannett. Gannett constitutes consent. The not or and our be over is and With material this Chairman re-broadcasted duplicated, would reproduced, you or call like webcast to

Mike Reed

and our we of We we second the our call of immediate the quarter, the last and proved assessment call, of that impact expectations cautiously When and country. days thanks our it impact crisis on couple Unfortunately, shared for was at Ashley. fast X the the thick preliminary accurate. brand-new see. the business our the or spoke able of QX our largely everyone, time, to no through had on on we weeks taking Thanks, to based morning. health our guidance this first some were in that May. Good join pandemic be earnings And on time for it the of were this first in to X May morning,

we May. as on, Although, than better see we slightly which to better we quarter a see revenue stronger went expense did slightly we and when the in were led early number spoke EBITDA anticipating did results,

I So, guess was news. good that

XX%. the XX% pro-forma the just year April the Gannett. quarter revenues saw basis improvement Revenue Legacy helped rebound Our revenue revenue in which down down trend total and We trends Advertising nice revenue. of in for our for improved for acquisition did about drive June the to XX% us, sequential were category a and quarter. revenue month hit prior for quarter, through hardest a throughout over though was each down same-store we on positive with the during the see the on quarter, movement

and part the for business of from which to shutdown circulation side, due came good in single for circulation on in place around major which material the sales copy our impact impacted USA TODAY. the sales. the And second then, quarter, hotel travel, single hurt airports copy closures were impact On copy the a country, They single sheltered our had total revenues. being the folks sales lower, a

July. growth XXX,XXX continued digital-only continued On a subscribers. were single with has held to digital pleased On note, which subscriber subscription subscriber second results with quarter. through and in side, trends, first positive with our up moving copy, quarter the growth, we the away expectations see prior the year we print the from constant strong quarter ending over to That very XX% over

growth week week In our last this largest year. single paid subscribers fact was for digital

subscribers digital-only subscription paid million ambitious X months. pass the goals category. for next within digital we to few and the expect have expectations Furthermore, We

the business this We expect in category plan briefly and next driver couple hear our over major strategic call the more to into this coming in years. of share plans a it of to this about be our quarters, goals fits our We later and plan. you’ll in a on how lot

the As you all severe had impact and know, economy. COVID-XX an crisis the abrupt on

where pandemic, effectively for have while million the date, to these we distribution of second to preserving million to quarter. our and to in $XX.X and we $XXX reconfigurations, and quick by of XXXX. the annualized new to the employees addition over remotely asking work. Collectively, we annual staff which In our able However, successfully supplies resulted reductions, news, and sold, savings on we over savings employees, the of along million implemented we cost implementing second the on furloughs, ourselves XX% goods and were to in wage discretionary teams, million reductions were year. for were who the efforts. normal-way had procedures set quarter. many prioritized spite reduction other as safety which $XXX vital these primarily to measures come down categories cost implementation the for change manufacturing of of prior savings produce to such adjusted had travel possible costs in These our of $XXX to more. work implemented ability to during $XXX spend response our over in our synergies, synergy in safety execute exceeds goal being In continue by lower to our quickly resulted to cost million execute to in plans, implement during the expense circumstances savings or and with in to quarter Year continue synergy for able driven This and was previously

the way we cost The we which XXXX. with the us are side adjusted know that on target ago, million Having exceed we few last. well fact, efforts well are things times, will long of the in a as and Obviously, EBITDA, finished to company, quarter. significant that, million a the we end in as preserve managing on margin and how the Gannett this don’t expectations end difficult took quarter in April by of quick I through our EBITDA We my will $XX of we and said realizing helped company that our for $XXX our very very mention full And did our want few believe to target. and here I we mentioned minutes to exceeded second the colleagues at our

to or to safety to colleagues time. to especially unprecedented given shift policies. during was communities new from at my Gannett their extremely surprisingly serve for their to here Everyone and all working The with hard home express I our for workplace the their this best quarter adjust throughout First, worked continue made seamless, had to speed which perform to the my have sacrifices that many want everyone to the my enable adapt. colleagues and I gratitude applaud been jobs. I them to flexibility, teammates know did

a our I now. special time value thanks no has to Second, At content in right been as the history give teams. want it of our news as journalism is to clear high-quality

and of systemic at We and a global the over intersection pandemic inequality. nationwide turmoil are racism

officials while worked to help safe exercising have accountable. public keep tirelessly of informed, holding journalists the and communities crucial role Our our

we’re the noise overtaken since we misinformation, through fair over the social with visitors websites. reporting, of trust fact-based late protests visits In February, and that. views spread average in per XXX platforms May, to June, have Comscore. digital justice averaged late and we doing to In by As local daily are credible, readers nation, month, early social every million a our of content. our our unique when properties over digital our And second the Coronavirus had million saw the swept us XX% sort XXX increase quarter,

this restrained. are people sued content city turnover. to like circumstances out was to Taylor’s the we’re surrounding about to specific the while for has is explored the save police it to they for could including since Breonna us teams. Number while documents George XX network call reporting USA in information. efforts the also crucial investigative death The demand not one, there. has continued talking which encounters The Floyd, death, expose has tragic coming attempt to breathe that TODAY the she after our Louisville quarter fatal life said So in XXXX, a horrific of Courier-Journal from to few Courier-Journal response folks her refused the being shot. to Also failure I’d

a XXX ultimately from like Virginia on, uncovered News it the a quarter. business-to-business improvement Another drove report who clock-based our well so help important a responded. through find this each exclusive support we’ve to our time It’s businesses were example, with X, innovative crucial. reached man, served the some visualization. significant economic know available, period. local the our we editorial local together and the developed in Support the in momentum to clear that asked prison. quarter. work the be through advertising business Solutions vaccine pandemic. prominent were years misinformation businesses things local excited and up to designed about hard with small members partnership attention businesses, to Local, them a evidence, helped communities that continue facing their content was about After our XX which on missing this connect time. work teams our businesses. Leader could prison, product community individuals It uncover solutions advertising. which companies is, brought seems framework. how did to to continuing to media Brad Rebuilding into governor’s launched strong evidence took thousands Marketing XX communities Back on at brought the with footing, also we segment ways the and supporting when our pardon closely, enterprising We for to local they put an showed I’d the their with month. updated The out Fentress Zinn, Brad estimate reporter sent who Brad to challenges and TODAY Rojai and the monthly. team along had crazy the to called quarter that his are online month-over-month will re-opened Within to end letters was did example It experts over One Staunton, of the we where result the team, to all vaccine. expert in as panel campaigns. We challenging This QX. quarter, only was COVID-XX missing platform partnering that freed USA of the a over in an last a leading Project develop really strong Innocence This our explained extremely Number to marketing partnership And during finally, America, of Virginia, story The help continued how helped improvement back highlighted businesses that during are a In by journalist, of widely to surprise some draw from be manage businesses and in adapting partnership available an information to

key during no on sponsorships, while almost and enabled the during impacted Our notice. significantly feel while was communities. key financial performance, August successfully forward-looking really bookings partnerships, they events the quarter, in-person our and restrictions needed this and September quarter strong our virtual for that was and retain for launched creating gatherings, events business in pivoted a to good XX outlet much business. look Fourth, This us also to due

space over many had down great some scope pandemic pretty virtual our there. down scale the a have event events caused past, revenue to virtual events in of we in this in year And and division, in XX% was our the quarter. about to increase the done revenue seen dramatically events. of though the had prior second We XX% our peers While accomplishment us

awards, XX Our engagements. high over XX broadcast audience school million XX This sports June for social virtually event on local markets. were media example, generated in

reiterate for our XX,XXX fast subscribers. Comics, And that division we’re digital-only We that to over Wonder first and outdoor Fifth, Woman like since DC with I’d are virtual double a launching the be race partnership events million June, we we also have races launched had race number. one to targeting a approaching registrations, and series. new will in

prior of we as better proud an Having much through marketing lastly consumer the at extremely we believe, in change. discrimination racial that focused solidarity racism, we forms. in our can been outlets the and community and systemic said to work and the media to can injustice, the black have against And in on We are with reporting. an has we work all internally also year. all XX% we the in continue accountability to dialogue our highly drive We how forefront that, keep to drive grow company ally the team our reporting, through stand of communities has done, do our fight can our at as over clip

We fostering all and are inclusive, to committed diverse, and level workforce company at a the at of areas Board Gannett. our equitable

company, toward our our and diversity, sharing a quarters As shortly, progress goals measure the years. will equity and be coming our intend and to we inclusion, we plan publicly in

committed was real to internally the disappointment of change, externally. estate quarter for sales. are the driving some and us our in We both drag on A

our While had we estate would overall the that pushed a in thought year did couple sales, change close no property this quarter. out sales for see we in expectations of we real to later get second

our to be half continue the is look clear on year. June, we trend is that of slightly the to expect second basis. better for performance improvement from similar same XXX we than XXX to significant we it ahead, face points in QX, the As the to In of basis or second month uncertainty down revenue pro store overall our was a quarter. forma results XX% the when That revenue in

We permit to us have are sustain in trends. these trends, hopeful we so pickup July seen backdrop that economic our the will improving some

such measures, or since we reductions, expense slowly are the the under wage replacing likely pandemic cost out maintaining be measures, will is with is our and pressure them but the economy control. expense phasing permanent reductions, we the challenged for to reduction and furloughs On until remain under temporary side, as

COVID-XX, the cost quarter, million over million anticipate which we a year. to actions addition third realizing $XX annualizes in In to synergies $XXX to of over the related also

right a Let’s the moment the picture in part large for talk undervalued move QX now, years. from for to of away bigger couple We believe of QX, company uncertain about because economic next our the outlook. is

future. about remain we However, optimistic very the

value, a that remain over We priorities believe several create upside at path will focused the to There of priorities center key the that clear strategy. are next are we few on years. see we highly our significant and operating

Let me them review quickly.

primary we are focused on and both revenue EBITDA. improving that lead highly revenue will categories X are First, financial our performance, to improved performance. There

is the is and driver category revenue a in of growth Subscription large-scale category, base, this our subscription top along subscriptions, First largest digital income income already print we of base. we as subscriber stabilization our digital-only line major growth. through category our expect with that accelerate be revenue will

reach we digit in expect marketing revenue we and is line category our leveraging the Second segment our This the U.S. digital we contributor be growth. than which a has our across services overall business, growth top to revenue by to achieve business and expect it growth more revenue footprint foresee, to double major already million $XXX with

is category business. events third The our

we’ll community post-COVID, are in presence annually. meaningfully events expanding target our XX% over business We and our growth

efficient, EBITDA to which Beyond our focus an prudent will to revenue continue on improved cost lead we’ll creating EBITDA margins. efforts, structure and

our debt X financial asset by next priority current on intend on repayment of term XXXX. executing as to well second the performance generate debt goal by years focus the We the our is with refinancing over of repayment for our We plans proceeds sales. $XX shareholders. as plan to debt operating Our estate to our in end $XXX $XX lower believe sell of assets, XXXX. lead end of a to for significant that capital million million to another the along real upside reducing refinancing million non-strategic, leverage will $XXX with to cost non-EBITDA of million before and We

legacy Gannett Our following merger priorities in continued November. the Legacy final last our of operating integration media and

that. synergy mentioned at progress annualized synergies an think more earlier, complete, growth. do savings positioned basis million and I $XXX and is company as be our have for on We we’ll than I made great once meaningful will well implementing The on

higher leveraging which data benefit growth. flow, and also clear to review. path Doug? over sets, performance Through systems goals. to will growing re-financing turn is product larger across detailed and common sharing to we Further now financial drive much support us enterprise best give practices will of will capital, stabilizing our free value. CFO, and the see cash our further do EBITDA who shareholder Doug, customer a will a What from financial to accelerating our and I’d significantly presentation revenue and footprint performance repayment lower like We massive cost debt

Doug Horne

and morning, good everyone. you, Thank Mike,

operating totaled brought compensation basis, operating the million compared the the impact economic the acquisition cost lower year with of XX.X% revenues adjusted reduction XX% the compared prior of for Legacy by by revenues year EBITDA significant revenues, slowdown with EBITDA pro was were that in roughly continued quarter Gannett pandemic. well both in total quarter savings. result reductions XX.X% initiatives, on were statements and on million, QX lower in as offset down forma margin a On the lower which from cost The forma Adjusted distribution the basis approximately with was was In XX% quarter of as and QX. a various This reflecting as were quarter. For to of the and as synergy $XXX expenses due in the which XXXX. quarter of pro efficiencies. prior reduced up volumes prices and the production newsprint same-store QX synergy a $XX as by partially second line reflects savings

a spend segment moment on Now, let’s our results.

revenue on advertising from and disruption as X% secular million publishing reflecting within print pressures a the forma the in basis prior $XXX was second the pandemic. was well that Within year segment same-store to the down as continued quarter, pro the

improved coupled marketing basis, XX.X% the to approximately same-store digital in compared products. disruption segment impact revenues Circulation the did decreased a same-store digital-only advertising basis, our with reflects However, trends programmatic the year-over-year Home the representing classifieds June. media year-over-year April from pandemic digital pandemic. services we basis forma points quarter. on advertising a pro XX improvement EBITDA subscriptions, that grew subscriber % on Digital trends advertising to circulation for totaled CPMs month the pro a were With sales said, the XX.X% forma to compared Paid during as the Lower XX.X% approximately and by decreased revenue QX services during XX.X impact quarter. premium on and with trends consistent see in $XX and and pressure the marketing XXX,XXX year. driven for pro on we year-over-year which very forma each of from of pleased the million, display decrease XX% to basis digital contributed prior demand revenues revenue specifically Adjusted grew and subscriber the pandemic. of a forma remain the publishing not on pro quarter. delivery negative digital-only result second the negative as a a copy single with margin for see to on

by Marketing of terms $XX.X of quarter Solutions was and second basis, was driven the pandemic. a a million, forma year-over-year XX% this the revenue on store In the in segment. pro same decrease Total

the Adjusted the Our of the local build reach during Marketing totaled business margin EBITDA second for million, to strongest we year. quarter. and upon saw the a the second this X.X% of representing plan quarter, in Solutions half the rebound $X.X in segment momentum

was impact Our that was incurred QX intangible and and GAAP Gannette the net $XXX.X by on non-cash, this impairment was million pandemic This loss of the attributable due company’s goodwill to $XXX.X million. operations. the the of charge was to driven

Our also of $XX.X net reflects and million loss amortization. depreciation

was associated as We driven portion the company’s and our $X.X intangible primarily tax interest billion as $X.XX quarter. valuation impairment quarter as paying million the with expense. of down allowances rate tax goodwill the ended after deferred assets with related of nondeductible effective the during the quarter for well charge debt, by the to Additionally,

investments $XXX.X transactions during net and totaled balance estate consolidations. digital end resulting expenditures reflecting facility to billion. in approximately million development real to the $X.XX million QX, debt related of ongoing cash product due QX, $X.X Our was at of Capital

will relating XXXX. In contributions by employer installments of defer addition of to this the XXXX. to defer in to cash relying expense pension beginning measures, which preserved million certain over payments certain and of that our additional now payments timing scheduled ERISA We year, on of we provisions CARES lump also through required contributions XXXX $XX also originally us of Act, QX be able made were FICA in taxes. the Those and quarterly as will QX in were pension to enable

managing be XXXX effectively capital our XX% we also We’re for expect than planned. more than which we lower to originally had expenditures,

we closing represented of that credit our facility quarter, That XXXX. approximately in the payment since $XXX payment During our completed our interest had million. accrued first interest November under of

interest, approximately to fiscal Going debt decline we forward, debt. In to we’re will be be real as the million. $X.X $XX continues used further down continue Paying we priority. quarter, in going quarter our and down to second paying by debt this sales our reduce million pay top to proceeds from estate per

estate million strong cash of real offering but stock. Some over longer under XXXX. we of plan liquidity quarter million planned are with at-the-market in year. and $XX in bit a to today, a of the ended confident so have contract than sales on satisfy we obligations hoped, under are by to second half into our over of million ability of for ability remain complete the term $XXX in program our end $XXX the property confident common taking to the put had an to of Later $XX remain our million very loan. currently We to to up we sell equity our place we originally heading our in $XXX million balance position We sheet, property

second to to which program Form have place at put be available quarter decided our program housekeeping details we the no will flexibility. sell stock and with prices, More prospectus we the expect supplement, While file today of filing current current we good intention XX-Q. added in this to later conjunction our for common in in on

it to I’ll hand you. back Ashley,

Ashley Higgins

you they have Doug. if remind question to everyone Thanks, could much, how a Natalya, interest? put please so through,

Operator

turn no there Okay, Mike Reed. back are call to over Mr. Instructions] questions. will the I [Operator

Mike Reed

these for Doug, no equity And, we everybody, place. current we an to thanks, stock for intentions Doug have offering at Thank you. end program are there wrap-up at-the-market in that just to mentioned obviously, the And of sell reiterate putting And prices. that the towards quarter.

through $XXX them And those and We’re we from housekeeping, to just temporary improvement permanent. intention encouraged as to mentioned, cost undervalued actions year to our ended place to quarter, putting reassure QX, the We position, balance these with the liquidity I do are just We revenue it We it’s by added everybody. of end on levels, think think Doug mentioned, cash of we wouldn’t now for good price the wanted just year. with the through crisis, switching in on efforts QX a the today, quickly be continuous future wrap as and expect sheet. the the second execute any health our flexibility. the have we We moved mentioned, cost it. economic million and extending at have cost but we’re and impacted measures margins, to then, the we that Doug while quarter we strong preserved just of EBITDA line. as to was the use are additional remainder to though up, challenged, pandemic-related significantly savings seen expect roll And over by our trend

our ability debt remain country, our again revenue to QX X tough great for of integration we our confident ability our you this in ability term confident and We our execute very we the backdrop in in to forward X loan. under our continue cost repayment, including overall in our updating We investment outstanding highly everyone. look companies, reduce debt Despite joining the reductions. and to and remain value. and Thanks Thanks. future to create categories, to morning, obligations day, months the a plans, the Have went. our optimistic us on how meet our and on growth remain about

Operator

Thank you participation. This today’s your conference call. concludes for

disconnect. now may You