Meredith Corporation (NYSE:MDP) Q2 2018 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Jan 31, 2018 • 04:30 pm ET


Meredith Corporation (NYSE:MDP) Q2 2018 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript


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Good afternoon. My name is Chris and I will be your conference operator today. At this time I would like to welcome everyone to the Meredith Corporation's, Second Quarter Fiscal Year 2018 Earnings Call. All lines have been placed on mute to prevent any background noise. After the speaker's remarks there will be a question-and-answer session. (Operator Instructions) Thank you.

Mike Lovell, you may begin your conference.

Mike Lovell

Good afternoon, and thanks everyone for joining us. Our call today will begin with comments from Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Steve Lacy; President and Chief Operating Officer, Tom Harty; and Chief Financial Officer, Joe Ceryanec. Then, we'll turn the call over to your questions.

Also on the line today are Local Media Group President, Paul Karpowicz and National Media Group President, Jon Werther. An archive of the call will be available tomorrow on our investor website. Our remarks will include forward-looking statements and actual results may differ from forecasts. Some of the reasons why are described at the end of our news release issued earlier today and in some of our SEC filings. Certain financial measures that we are discussing on this call are expressed on a non-GAAP basis and have been adjusted to exclude the impact of special items. Reconciliations of these non-GAAP measures are included in our earnings release, which is available in the Investor Relations section of our website.

With that, Steve will begin.

Steve Lacy

Thank you very much Mike and good afternoon everyone. I hope you have seen our news release issued earlier this afternoon. We are very pleased to have closed our acquisition of Time Inc. in just two short months and to have delivered record earnings per share for a non-political second quarter and for the first half of our fiscal 2018.

I'll begin this afternoon with Meredith's second quarter and first half results. Next I'll review the strategic rationale that drove the Time Inc. acquisition and give you a day one snapshot of what the new Meredith looks like now. Then I'll turn it over to Joe and Tom who will discuss a series of events and activities that have happened since the November 26 acquisition announcement, update you on how the Meredith and the Time Inc. properties have performed, outline our integration and go-forward strategy and provide insight into how we are thinking about our financial outlook for the near term.

We were quite pleased to report record earnings per share for a non-political second quarter and first half. Our performance was driven by strong growth in non-political ad revenue in our Local Media Group, along with record digital performance and solid expense discipline in our National Media Group. Fiscal 2018 second quarter earnings per share were $3.49 compared with $1.58 per share in the prior year period. Excluding special items in both periods, fiscal 2018 second quarter earnings per share were $1.14 compared to earnings per share of $1.30 a year ago where we benefited from $0.52 per share in political related ad revenue.