Analyst Says Audacy Needs to Cut Costs to Survive

Story here from Jeff Blumenthal at The Philadelphia Business Journal:

In light of another quarter of sagging revenue and tepid ad sales, at least one analyst who tracks Audacy believes the audio content provider might not survive the next year unless it significantly cut costs.

Craig Huber of Huber Research Partners made that declaration one day after the Philadelphia-based company reported fourth quarter earnings on Wednesday. Audacy’s stock closed down more than 5% at 14 cents per share after the earnings became public, putting the price at about half of the 29 cents per share it was worth when the company reported third quarter earnings in November.

The nation’s second largest radio station owner has more than $2 billion in debt on its books.

Looks like the stock price is sitting at 16 cents as of Friday morning.

It’s been rough sledding for Audacy, which owns 94 WIP, KYW News Radio, 1210 WPHT, WOGL, B101, and a couple other stations that I can never remember when I write these stories. Back in the summer, the stock dipped below a dollar, so they got a compliance warning from the NYSE, which basically means you have to get back above a dollar or else you risk being de-listed. They can try a reverse stock split, where you essentially merge shares, but it seems like the problem is that expenses are too high and radio advertising isn’t amazing in a currently slow economy.

WIP and WFAN and the big sports stations do well for Audacy, so they’re really not going to ever dig into those and make significant cut backs… I think. They’ve got a podcasting arm and made a lot of acquisitions in recent years, so keep an eye out for cuts coming from other sectors of the business.

Here’s another link to Jeff’s story: Audacy will need to cut costs ‘into the bone’ to survive the next year, analyst says