Cumulus Reports Operating Results for Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2016

ATLANTA, March 16, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Cumulus Media Inc. (NASDAQ:CMLS) (the “Company,” “we,” “us,” or “our”) today announced operating results for the three months and year ended December 31, 2016.  

For the three months ended December 31, 2016, the Company reported net revenue of $299.5 million, down 3.0% from the three months ended December 31, 2015, net loss of $543.7 million and Adjusted EBITDA of $56.9 million, down 9.8% from the quarter ended December 31, 2015.  For the year ended December 31, 2016, the Company reported net revenue of $1,141.4 million, down 2.3% from the year ended December 31, 2015, net loss of $510.7 million and Adjusted EBITDA of $205.9 million, down 20.6% from the year ended December 31, 2015.  During the fourth quarter of 2016, the Company recorded non-cash impairment charges against intangible assets and goodwill of $603.1 million.

Mary Berner, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cumulus Media Inc. said, “We entered 2016 with a singular objective: to fix the core business problems – poor culture, poor ratings and poor operational execution – which was essential to establishing a foundation on which to build improved financial results. Throughout the year we made significant progress addressing each of these areas, most visibly in ratings growth where we’ve outperformed the industry for 15 straight months. In fact, with two back-to-back quarters of revenue share increases on the station side, a trend which continued through January, we have early evidence that, despite a tough industry environment, our foundational work is beginning to translate into improved financial performance.”

Operating Summary (in thousands, except percentages and per share data):

 

  Three Months Ended December 31,
  2016   2015   % Change
Net revenue $ 299,541     $ 308,825     (3.0 )%
Net loss $ (543,677)     $ (4,599)     **
Adjusted EBITDA (1) $ 56,865     $ 63,047     (9.8 )%
Basic and diluted loss per share $ (18.57)     $ (0.16)      

  Year Ended December 31,
  2016   2015   % Change
Net revenue $ 1,141,400     $ 1,168,679     (2.3) %
Net loss $ (510,720)     $ (546,494)     6.5 %
Adjusted EBITDA (1) $ 205,867     $ 259,145     (20.6) %
Basic and diluted loss per share $ (17.45)     $ (18.72)      

** Calculation is not meaningful

    December 31, 2016   December 31, 2015   % Change
Cash and cash equivalents   $ 131,259     $ 31,657     314.6 %
             
Term loan   $ 1,810,266     $ 1,838,940     (1.6) %
7.75% Senior Notes   610,000     610,000     %
Total debt   $ 2,420,266     $ 2,448,940     (1.2) %

  Three Months Ended December 31,
  2016   2015   % Change
Capital expenditures $ 6,333     $ 3,419     85.2 %

  Year Ended December 31,
  2016   2015   % Change
Capital expenditures $ 23,037     $ 19,236     19.8 %

(1) Adjusted EBITDA is not a financial measure calculated or presented in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (“GAAP”). For additional information, see “Non-GAAP Financial Measure and Definition”.

Results for Three Months Ended December 31, 2016

Net Revenue

The Company operates in two reportable segments, the Radio Station Group and Westwood One. The Radio Station Group revenue is derived primarily from the sale of broadcasting time to local, regional and national advertisers. Westwood One revenue is generated primarily through network advertising.

Corporate and Other includes overall executive, administrative and support functions for each of the Company’s reportable segments, including finance and administration, legal, human resources and information technology functions.

The following tables present our net revenue by segment (dollars in thousands).

    Three Months Ended December 31, 2016
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
Net revenue   $ 209,756     $ 89,103     $ 682     $ 299,541  
% of total revenue   70.0 %   29.8 %   0.2 %   100.0 %
$ change from three months ended December 31, 2015   $ 3,216     $ (12,478)     $ (22)     $ (9,284)  
% change from three months ended December 31, 2015   1.6 %   (12.3) %   (3.1) %   (3.0) %

    Three Months Ended December 31, 2015
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
Net revenue   $ 206,540     $ 101,581     $ 704     $ 308,825  
% of total revenue   66.9 %   32.9 %   0.2 %   100.0 %

Net (loss) income

The following tables present our net (loss) income by segment (dollars in thousands).

    Three Months Ended December 31, 2016
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
Net (loss) income   $ (561,459)     $ 1,801     $ 15,981     $ (543,677)  
$ change from three months ended December 31, 2015   $ (605,235)     $ 3,996     $ 62,161     $ (539,078)  
% change from three months ended December 31, 2015   **   **   134.6 %   **

    Three Months Ended December 31, 2015
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
Net income (loss)   $ 43,776     $ (2,195)     $ (46,180)     $ (4,599)  

** Calculation is not meaningful

Adjusted EBITDA

The following tables present our Adjusted EBITDA by segment (dollars in thousands).

    Three Months Ended December 31, 2016
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
Adjusted EBITDA   $ 58,915     $ 4,986     $ (7,036)     $ 56,865  
$ change from three months ended December 31, 2015   $ (3,280)     $ (4,913)     $ 2,011     $ (6,182)  
% change from three months ended December 31, 2015   (5.3) %   (49.6) %   22.2 %   (9.8) %

    Three Months Ended December 31, 2015
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
Adjusted EBITDA   $ 62,195     $ 9,899     $ (9,047)     $ 63,047  

** Calculation is not meaningful

Results for Year Ended December 31, 2016

Net Revenue

The following tables present our net revenue by segment (dollars in thousands).

    Year Ended December 31, 2016
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
Net revenue   $ 802,396     $ 336,610     $ 2,394     $ 1,141,400  
% of total revenue     70.3 %     29.5 %     0.2 %     100.0 %
$ change from year ended December 31, 2015   $ 6,013     $ (32,358)     $ (934)     $ (27,279)  
% change from year ended December 31, 2015   0.8 %   (8.8) %   (28.1) %   (2.3) %

    Year Ended December 31, 2015
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
Net revenue   $ 796,383     $ 368,968     $ 3,328     $ 1,168,679  
% of total revenue   68.1 %   31.6 %   0.3 %   100.0 %

Net loss

The following tables present our net loss by segment (dollars in thousands).

    Year Ended December 31, 2016
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
Net loss   $ (356,198)     $ (11,071)     $ (143,451)     $ (510,720)  
$ change from year ended December 31, 2015   $ (90,935)     $ 130,108     $ (3,399)     $ 35,774  
% change from year ended December 31, 2015   (34.3) %   92.2 %   (2.4) %   6.5 %

    Year Ended December 31, 2015
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
Net loss   $ (265,263)     $ (141,179)     $ (140,052)     $ (546,494)  

** Calculation is not meaningful

Adjusted EBITDA

The following tables present our Adjusted EBITDA by segment (dollars in thousands).

    Year Ended December 31, 2016
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
Adjusted EBITDA   $ 218,192     $ 22,984     $ (35,309)     $ 205,867  
$ change from year ended December 31, 2015   $ (23,481)     $ (29,974)     $ 177     $ (53,278)  
% change from year ended December 31, 2015   (9.7) %   (56.6) %   0.5 %   (20.6) %

    Year Ended December 31, 2015
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
Adjusted EBITDA   $ 241,673     $ 52,958     $ (35,486)     $ 259,145  

Earnings Call Information
Cumulus Media Inc. will host a teleconference today at 4:30 PM eastern time to discuss its fourth quarter and full year 2016 operating results.

The conference call dial-in number for domestic callers is 877-830-7699. International callers should dial 574-990-0924 for conference call access.  If prompted, the conference ID is 84471235. Please call five to ten minutes in advance to ensure that you are connected prior to the presentation.

Following completion of the call, a replay can be accessed until 11:30 PM eastern time, April 16, 2017. Domestic callers can access the replay by dialing 800-585-8367 or 855-859-2056, replay code 84471235. International callers should dial +44 (0)145255000 for conference replay access. An archive of the webcast will be available beginning 24 hours after the call for a period of 30 days.

A link to the live audio webcast of the conference call and the related earnings presentation will be available on the investor section of the Cumulus Media Inc. website (www.cumulus.com/investors).

Forward-Looking Statements
Certain statements in this release may constitute “forward-looking” statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and other federal securities laws. Such statements are statements other than historical fact and relate to our intent, belief or current expectations primarily with respect to certain historical and our future operating, financial, and strategic performance. Any such forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and may involve risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ from those contained in or implied by the forward-looking statements as a result of various factors including, but not limited to, risks and uncertainties relating to the need for additional funds to service our debt and to execute our business strategy, our ability to access borrowings under our revolving credit facility, our ability from time to time to renew one or more of our broadcast licenses, changes in interest rates, changes in the fair value of our investments, the timing of, and our ability to complete any acquisitions or dispositions pending from time to time, costs and synergies resulting from the integration of any completed acquisitions, our ability to effectively manage costs, our ability to generate and manage growth, the popularity of radio as a broadcasting and advertising medium, changing consumer tastes, the impact of general economic conditions in the United States or in specific markets in which we currently do business, industry conditions, including existing competition and future competitive technologies and cancellation, disruptions or postponements of advertising schedules in response to national or world events, our ability to generate revenues from new sources, including local commerce and technology-based initiatives, the impact of regulatory rules or proceedings that may affect our business from time to time, the write off of a material portion of the fair value of our FCC broadcast licenses and goodwill, and other risk factors described from time to time in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2016 (the “2016 Form 10-K”) and any previously filed Forms 10-Q. Many of these risks and uncertainties are beyond our control, and the unexpected occurrence or failure to occur of any such events or matters could significantly alter our actual results of operations or financial condition. Cumulus Media Inc. assumes no responsibility to update any forward-looking statement as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

About Cumulus Media
A leader in the radio broadcasting industry, Cumulus Media (NASDAQ:CMLS) combines high-quality local programming with iconic, nationally syndicated media, sports and entertainment brands to deliver premium content choices to the 245 million people reached each week through its 445 owned-and-operated stations broadcasting in 90 US media markets (including eight of the top 10), more than 8,200 broadcast radio stations affiliated with its Westwood One network and numerous digital channels. Together, the Cumulus/Westwood One platforms make Cumulus Media one of the few media companies that can provide advertisers with national reach and local impact. Cumulus/Westwood One is the exclusive radio broadcast partner to some of the largest brands in sports, entertainment, news, and talk, including the NFL, the NCAA, the Masters, the Olympics, the GRAMMYs, the Academy of Country Music Awards, the American Music Awards, the Billboard Music Awards, Westwood One News, and more. Additionally, it is the nation’s leading provider of country music and lifestyle content through its NASH brand, which serves country fans nationwide through radio programming, exclusive digital content, and live events. For more information, visit www.cumulus.com.

CUMULUS MEDIA INC.
Unaudited Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations
(Dollars in thousands, except per share data)
 
    Three Months Ended
December 31,
  Year Ended
December 31,
    2016   2015   2016   2015
Net revenue   $ 299,541     $ 308,825     $ 1,141,400     $ 1,168,679  
Operating expenses:                
Content costs   115,254     109,771     427,780     396,426  
Selling, general & administrative expenses   120,426     126,910     472,900     477,327  
Depreciation and amortization   19,244     25,523     87,267     102,105  
LMA fees   2,473     2,544     12,824     10,129  
Corporate expenses   6,975     8,726     35,383     35,730  
Stock-based compensation expense   565     986     2,948     21,033  
Acquisition-related and restructuring costs   (1,420)     3,480     1,817     16,640  
Loss (gain) on sale of assets or stations   1,460     2,064     (95,695)     2,856  
Impairment of intangible assets and goodwill   603,149         604,965     565,584  
Impairment charges – equity interest in Pulser Media Inc.               19,364  
Total operating expenses   868,126     280,004     1,550,189     1,647,194  
Operating (loss) income   (568,585)     28,821     (408,789)     (478,515)  
Non-operating (expense) income:                
Interest expense   (34,738)     (35,592)     (138,634)     (141,679)  
Interest income   129     26     493     433  
Loss on early extinguishment of debt   8,017     13,222     8,017     13,222  
Other income, net   441     1,604     2,039     14,205  
Total non-operating expense, net   (26,151)     (20,740)     (128,085)     (113,819)  
(Loss) income before income taxes   (594,736)     8,081     (536,874)     (592,334)  
Income tax benefit (expense)   51,059     (12,680)     26,154     45,840  
Net loss   $ (543,677)     $ (4,599)     $ (510,720)     $ (546,494)  
Basic and diluted loss per common share:                
Basic: Loss per share   $ (18.57)     $ (0.16)     $ (17.45)     $ (18.72)  
Diluted: Loss per share   $ (18.57)     $ (0.16)     $ (17.45)     $ (18.72)  
Weighted average basic common shares outstanding   29,275,111     29,211,773     29,270,455     29,176,930  
Weighted average diluted common shares outstanding   29,275,111     29,211,773     29,270,455     29,176,930  
 

Non-GAAP Financial Measure and Definition

From time to time we utilize certain financial measures that are not prepared or calculated in accordance with GAAP to assess our financial performance and profitability. Adjusted EBITDA is the financial metric utilized by management to analyze the performance of the Company as a whole and each of our reportable segments, respectively. This measure isolates the amount of income generated by our core operations after the incurrence of corporate, general and administrative expenses. Management also uses this measure to determine the contribution of our core operations to the funding of our corporate resources utilized to manage our operations and our non-operating expenses including debt service and acquisitions. In addition, Adjusted EBITDA, excluding the impact of LMA fees, is a key metric for purposes of calculating and determining compliance with certain covenants in our Credit Agreement.

In deriving this measure, the Company excludes depreciation, amortization and stock-based compensation expense, as these do not represent cash payments for activities directly related to our core operations. The Company also excludes any gain or loss on the exchange or sale of any assets, any gain or loss on derivative instruments, early extinguishment of debt and LMA fees as they do not represent cash transactions nor are they associated with core operations.  Expenses relating to acquisitions and restructuring costs are also excluded from the calculation of Adjusted EBITDA as they are not directly related to our ongoing core operations. The Company also excludes any costs associated with impairment of assets as they do not require a cash outlay.

Management believes that Adjusted EBITDA, although not a measure that is calculated in accordance with GAAP, is commonly employed by the investment community as a measure for determining the market value of a media company and comparing the operational and financial performance among media companies. Management has also observed that Adjusted EBITDA is routinely employed to evaluate and negotiate the potential purchase price for media companies and is a key metric for purposes of calculating and determining compliance with certain covenants in our Credit Agreement. Given the relevance to our overall value, management believes that investors consider the metric to be extremely useful.

Adjusted EBITDA should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute for net income (loss), operating income, cash flows from operating activities or any other measure for determining the Company’s operating performance or liquidity that is calculated in accordance with GAAP. In addition, Adjusted EBITDA may be defined or calculated differently by other companies, and comparability may be limited.

The following tables reconcile net (loss) income, the most directly comparable financial measure calculated and presented in accordance with GAAP, to Adjusted EBITDA for the three months and year ended December 31, 2016 and 2015 (dollars in thousands):

    Three Months Ended December 31, 2016
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
GAAP net (loss) income   $ (561,459)     $ 1,801     $ 15,981     $ (543,677)  
Income tax benefit           (51,059)     (51,059)  
Non-operating (income) expense, including net interest expense       (104)     34,268     34,164  
LMA fees   2,473             2,473  
Depreciation and amortization   13,290     5,521     433     19,244  
Stock-based compensation expense           545     545  
Loss (gain) on sale of assets or stations   1,462         (2)     1,460  
Impairment of intangible assets and goodwill   603,149             603,149  
Acquisition-related and restructuring costs       (2,232)     812     (1,420)  
Franchise and state taxes           3     3  
Gain on early extinguishment of debt           (8,017)     (8,017)  
Adjusted EBITDA   $ 58,915     $ 4,986     $ (7,036)     $ 56,865  

    Three Months Ended December 31, 2015
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
GAAP net income (loss)   $ 43,776     $ (2,195)     $ (46,180)     $ (4,599)  
Income tax expense           12,680     12,680  
Non-operating (income) expense, including net interest expense   (2)     293     33,671     33,962  
LMA fees   2,541         3     2,544  
Depreciation and amortization   15,894     8,976     653     25,523  
Stock-based compensation expense           986     986  
(Gain) loss on sale of assets or stations   (17)     2,081         2,064  
Acquisition-related and restructuring costs       747     2,733     3,480  
Franchise and state taxes           (371)     (371)  
Gain on early extinguishment of debt           (13,222)     (13,222)  
Adjusted EBITDA   $ 62,192     $ 9,902     $ (9,047)     $ 63,047  

    Year Ended December 31, 2016
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
GAAP net loss   $ (356,198)     $ (11,071)     $ (143,451)     $ (510,720)  
Income tax benefit           (26,154)     (26,154)  
Non-operating expense, including net interest expense   13     122     135,967     136,102  
LMA fees   12,824             12,824  
Depreciation and amortization   54,071     31,178     2,018     87,267  
Stock-based compensation expense           2,948     2,948  
Gain on sale of assets or stations   (95,667)         (28)     (95,695)  
Impairment of intangible assets and goodwill   603,149     1,816         604,965  
Acquisition-related and restructuring costs       939     878     1,817  
Franchise and state taxes           530     530  
Gain on early extinguishment of debt           (8,017)     (8,017)  
Adjusted EBITDA   $ 218,192     $ 22,984     $ (35,309)     $ 205,867  

    Year Ended December 31, 2015
    Radio Station Group   Westwood One   Corporate and Other   Consolidated
GAAP net loss   $ (265,263)     $ (141,179)     $ (140,052)     $ (546,494)  
Income tax benefit           (45,840)     (45,840)  
Non-operating (income) expense, including net interest expense   (6)     1,247     125,800     127,041  
LMA fees   10,127         2     10,129  
Depreciation and amortization   63,342     36,538     2,225     102,105  
Stock-based compensation expense           21,035     21,035  
Loss on sale of assets or stations   668     2,081     107     2,856  
Impairment of intangible assets and goodwill   432,805     132,671     104     565,580  
Impairment charges — equity interest in Pulser Media Inc.       19,364         19,364  
Acquisition-related and restructuring costs       2,236     14,405     16,641  
Franchise and state taxes           (50)     (50)  
Gain on early extinguishment of debt           (13,222)     (13,222)  
Adjusted EBITDA   $ 241,673     $ 52,958     $ (35,486)     $ 259,145  
 
CONTACT: For further information, please contact:
Cumulus Media Inc.
Collin Jones
Investor Relations
collin@cumulus.com
404-260-6600