Cable networks fueled a rise in operating cash flow at E.W.
Scripps Co. for the second quarter, despite losses in its broadcast division.
Overall, operating cash flow rose 9.3 percent to $110
million for the period. Earnings per share for the second quarter hit 56 cents, up from 45
cents a year ago.
For the six-month period, revenue at the corporate level
was up 7.9 percent to $761.7 million, and earnings per share increased to 96 cents from 75
cents a year ago.
Operating cash flow at Home & Garden Television nearly
tripled during the second quarter, to $10.6 million from $3.4 million last year. For the
six-month period, operating cash flow was $14.8 million, up from $5.2 million.
Revenue at the cable channel increased 69 percent during
the three-month period to $40.9 million. In the first half of the year, revenue increased
66 percent to $73.9 million. HGTV now reaches 55 million homes, an increase of 13 million
from a year ago.
Revenue at Food Network rose 60 percent to $15.6 million,
and operating cash flow was $3.3 million compared with a loss of $1.8 million in the same
period a year ago.
Revenue for the first half increased 59 percent to $29.7
million, and operating cash flow for the period was $3.8 million, up from a cash-flow
deficit of $4.2 million a year ago.
Food's circulation rose to 40.7 million subscribers, up 7.6
million from a year ago.
Scripps cautioned that although Food's numbers were
impressive, increased costs associated with the addition of more than 1,000 hours of new
programming could affect the channel's results in the second half.
Scripps is also gearing up for the Sept. 30 launch of its
new interactive channel, Do-It-Yourself.
"DIY was designed specifically with interactive
technology in mind, and it is an integral piece of our strategy to build networks that are
deep in content and high in utility," Scripps chairman, president and CEO William
Burleigh said in a prepared statement.
"We're also developing local portals on the Internet
that leverage the trusted brands and marketing power of our newspapers and television
stations," he added.
The company's newspaper division also reported positive
second-quarter results, with a cash-flow increase of 7.5 percent to $70 million and a 6
percent reduction in the cost of newsprint during the second quarter.
Broadcast television continued to show weakness in the
second quarter, with operating cash flow dropping by 22 percent to $22.7 million. Revenue
for the second quarter decreased by 8 percent to $81.6 million.
Broadcast cash flow was $49.2 million in the first half of
the year, down 15.2 percent, and revenue dropped 4 percent to $156.9 million.