Financial picture is starting to get brighter at the ProjoAugust 10th, 2011 at 6:00 am by Ted Nesi under Nesi's Notes
The Journal’s ad sales fell 8% in the second quarter compared with a year earlier, according to an SEC filing by parent company A.H. Belo. That follows 13 consecutive quarters of double-digit advertising losses, making April 1-June 30 the paper’s best three-month stretch since late 2007.
The Journal’s ad sales shrank by a smaller percentage in the second quarter than those of its sister papers, the Dallas Morning News and The Press-Enterprise of Riverside, Calif., A.H. Belo said last month.
The Projo’s classified ad revenue fell 5%, display and digital ad revenue fell 7% each, and preprint ad revenue fell 11%. The SEC filing attributed the drop in display sales to “a decline in retail advertising, partially offset by an increase in general advertising.” Classified ads for housing and jobs declined but car listings rose.
The Journal’s total revenue – which also includes circulation and printing/distribution sales – was down 6% in the first half of this year compared with 2010, falling from $49 million to $46 million. But second-quarter revenue was down just 4% year-over-year, to $24 million.
Advertising has contributed 57% of the Projo’s revenue so far this year, with circulation adding 36%, a big change from the old 80/20 rule that said newspapers get 80% of revenue from ads and 20% from circulation.
Projo.com will roll out a “premium-content-light” system this month as a first step toward implementing a paywall, A.H. Belo executives said on a conference call with investors in July. But so far The Journal has not offered any official word about the pending changes to its website.
More Providence Journal and A.H. Belo coverage:
- A.H. Belo’s surprising success amid the newspaper storm (May 18)
- Projo falls below $100M mark as half of ads evaporate (March 14)
- Projo union OKs new 3-year contract with AH Belo (Feb. 16)
- No reason for Belo to sell Projo with price at $51m (Dec. 28)
- Why the Projo’s finances are healthier than you think (Nov. 18)