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Arbitron Q3 Revenue Jumps Over 8%

What radio stations pay Arbitron for ratings was a big factor in the company's successful 3rd quarter which it reported to Wall Street yesterday. Q3 revenue for Arbitron was $114.3 million, an increase of 8.3% over the $105.6 million it brought in a year earlier. There were two big contributors to Arbitron's successful quarter. The phased-in price increase radio stations across the country are paying for the Portable People Meter. And, annual escalators in the company's multi-year radio ratings contracts.

Costs and expenses for the third quarter increased by 11.4 percent to $86.1 million in 2012 from $77.2 million in 2011. Factors contributing to the growth of third-quarter costs include the previously announced incremental costs associated with in-person recruitment, address-based sampling and cell-phone household sampling, as well as increased investments in Arbitron Mobile and the previously noted impairment charge.

Arbitron Chief Executive Officer William Kerr said, "In the third quarter, we announced that Arbitron and comScore will work together on a groundbreaking cross-platform initiative for ESPN. We are working to integrate census-level data from PCs, mobile devices, and television set-top boxes with the personal, passive and single-source measurement capabilities of our PPM technology. We plan to track and report the consumption of video, audio, and display content across radio, television, PCs, smartphones, and tablets. Our goal is a new methodology that the media and marketing industry can embrace as the template for the future of cross-platform measurement. This initiative is a strong validation of our strategy for cross-platform, and is a direct outcome of the pioneering work Arbitron delivered in our cross-platform pilot for the Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement (CIMM). Also in the third quarter, we continued to grow our revenue and earnings as we maintained our investments in the value and utility of our core services and continued to invest in the opportunities presented by the emerging markets of mobile and cross-platform."

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