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Cumulus Media Reports Operating Results for 2022

Total Revenue of $953.5 Million, Up 4% Year-Over-Year
Digital Revenue of More Than $142 Million, Up 12% Year-Over-Year
Net Income of $16.2 Million, Down 6% Year-Over-Year
Adjusted EBITDA of $166.0 Million, Up 23% Year-Over-Year

ATLANTA, Feb. 23, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Cumulus Media Inc. (NASDAQ: CMLS) (the “Company,” "Cumulus Media," “we,” “us,” or “our”) today announced operating results for the three months and year ended December 31, 2022.

Mary G. Berner, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cumulus Media, said, "Despite considerable economic turbulence, we delivered fourth quarter financial performance in the upper half of our guidance range, continuing a multi-year period of significant accomplishments. Operating through a series of difficult macroeconomic environments, including the pandemic, we successfully executed a strategic plan under which we developed and drove new areas of growth, right-sized the balance sheet, improved the Company’s operating leverage and returned capital to shareholders. As a result, we have delivered consistent revenue growth, built several digital businesses to a $150+ million revenue run-rate, reduced our net leverage to its lowest level in more than a decade, and boosted our liquidity to give ourselves optionality regarding capital allocation.”

Berner added, “Looking ahead to 2023, we continue to face substantial economic headwinds. However, our battle-tested skill in performing during challenging times, as well as our very strong financial position, gives us substantial confidence in our ability to not only weather this depressed ad environment but take full advantage of opportunities that may arise over the coming quarters.”

2022 Key Highlights:

  • Increased total revenue by 4% year-over-year to $953.5 million
  • Increased digital revenue by 12% year-over-year, to more than $142 million (~15% of revenue)
    • Grew local digital marketing services 16% year-over-year with successful launch of Boost suite of digital presence products contributing to growth
    • Grew Cumulus Podcast Network revenue 11% year-over-year, driven by year-over- year download increase of 26% (from approximately 1.2 billion to 1.5 billion)
    • Increased streaming revenue by 12% year-over-year, driven by enhanced monetization across multiple ad channels and expansion of NFL representation to include streaming rights for first time ever
  • Delivered net income of $16.2 million, a decrease of 6% with margin reduction of approximately 20 basis points
    • Recorded a non-cash, pre-tax FCC license impairment charge of $15.5 million in 2022
    • Recorded a gain on early extinguishment of debt of $20.0 million in 2021
  • Increased Adjusted EBITDA(1) by 23% year-over-year, to $166.0 million
    • Finished 2022 with full year fixed costs approximately $90 million below 2019 baseline
    • Increased Adjusted EBITDA margin(1) year-over-year by approximately 270 basis points
    • Generated $78.5 mm of cash from operations
  • Completed $31.8 million of share repurchases for 2.5 million shares (representing 12.1% of weighted average diluted common shares outstanding as of 12/31/21)
    • Completed $25.0 million tender offer for 1.7 million shares
    • Repurchased additional $6.8 million of shares in open market (approximately 817,000 shares)
    • Retained $18.2 million of availability at year-end under previously announced $50 million share repurchase authorization
  • Reduced gross debt by $86.5 million, achieving the lowest net leverage levels in more than a decade – best among peers
    • Retired $74.0 million of debt (both term loan and senior notes) through open market repurchases at an average price of 93.9% of par
    • Reported total debt of $719.4 million, cash of $107.4 million and net debt(1) of $611.9 million at 12/31/22
    • Reduced net leverage(1) from 4.7x at 12/31/21 to 3.7x at 12/31/22

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

For the three months ended December 31, 2022, the Company reported net revenue of $251.3 million, a decrease of 0.4% from the three months ended December 31, 2021, net loss of $0.1 million and Adjusted EBITDA of $42.7 million.

For the year ended December 31, 2022, the Company reported net revenue of $953.5 million, an increase of 4.0% from the year ended December 31, 2021, net income of $16.2 million and Adjusted EBITDA of $166.0 million.

As ReportedThree Months Ended
December 31, 2022
 Three Months Ended
December 31, 2021
 % Change
Net revenue$251,270 $252,304 (0.4)%
Net (loss) income$(54) $17,639 N/A 
Adjusted EBITDA$42,717 $43,241 (1.2)%
Basic (loss) income per share$(0.00) $0.86 N/A 
Diluted (loss) income per share$(0.00) $0.84 N/A 

As ReportedYear Ended
December 31, 2022
 Year Ended
December 31, 2021
 % Change
Net revenue$953,506 $916,467 4.0%
Net income$16,235 $17,278 (6.0)%
Adjusted EBITDA$165,982 $134,857 23.1%
Basic income per share$0.83 $0.84 (1.2)%
Diluted income per share$0.81 $0.83 (2.4)%

(1)   Adjusted EBITDA, Adjusted EBITDA margin, net debt, and net leverage are not financial measures calculated or presented in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (“GAAP”). Net leverage is as defined in our Senior Credit Facility. For additional information, see “Non-GAAP Financial Measures.”

Revenue Detail Summary (dollars in thousands):

As ReportedThree Months Ended
December 31, 2022
 Three Months Ended
December 31, 2021
 % Change
Broadcast radio revenue:     
Spot$124,099 $121,820 1.9%
Network 63,525  71,318 (10.9)%
Total broadcast radio revenue 187,624  193,138 (2.9)%
Digital 37,708  35,036 7.6%
Other 25,938  24,130 7.5%
Net revenue$251,270 $252,304 (0.4)%

As ReportedYear Ended
December 31, 2022
 Year Ended
December 31, 2021
 % Change
Broadcast radio revenue:     
Spot$479,834 $457,607 4.9%
Network 229,772  252,567 (9.0)%
Total broadcast radio revenue 709,606  710,174 (0.1)%
Digital 142,312  126,874 12.2%
Other 101,588  79,419 27.9%
Net revenue$953,506 $916,467 4.0%

Balance Sheet Summary (dollars in thousands):

   December 31, 2022 December 31, 2021
 Cash and cash equivalents $107,433 $177,028
 Term loan due 2026 (2) $338,452 $356,240
 6.75% Senior notes (2) $380,927 $449,695

  Year Ended
December 31, 2022
 Year Ended
December 31, 2021
 Capital expenditures$31,062 $29,091
  Three Months Ended
December 31, 2022
 Three Months Ended
December 31, 2021
 Capital expenditures$12,502 $7,103

(2)   Excludes unamortized debt issuance costs.

Earnings Conference Call Details
The Company will host a conference call today at 8:30 AM ET to discuss its fourth quarter and full year 2022 operating results. NetRoadshow (NRS) is the service provider for this call. They will require email address verification (one-time only) and will provide registration confirmation. To participate in the conference call, please register in advance using the link on the Company’s investor relations website at Upon completing registration, a calendar invitation will follow with call access details, including a unique PIN, and replay details.

To join by phone with operator-assisted dial-in, domestic callers should dial 833-470-1428 and international callers should dial 404-975-4839. If prompted, the participant access code is 463875. Please call five to ten minutes in advance to ensure that you are connected prior to the call.

The conference call will also be broadcast live in listen-only mode through a link on the Company’s investor relations website at This link can also be used to access a recording of the call, which will be available shortly following its completion.

Please see an update to the Company’s investor presentation on the Company’s investor relations website at, which may be referenced on the conference call. Unless otherwise specified, information contained in the investor presentation or on our website is not incorporated into this press release or other documents we file with, or furnish to, the SEC.

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 our future operating, financial, and strategic performance and our plans and objectives, including with regard to returning capital to shareholders. Any such forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results, performance or achievements to differ from those contained in or implied by the forward-looking statements as a result of various factors. Such factors include, among others, risks and uncertainties related to the implementation of our strategic operating plans, the continued uncertain financial and economic conditions, the amount and frequency of our shareholder capital returns, the rapidly changing and competitive media industry, and the economy in general. We are subject to additional risks and uncertainties described in our quarterly and annual reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission from time to time, including in the "Risk Factors," and "Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations" sections contained therein. You should not rely on forward-looking statements since they involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that are, in some cases, beyond the Company’s control, and the unexpected occurrence or failure to occur of any such events or matters could cause our actual results, performance, financial condition or achievements to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Cumulus Media assumes no responsibility to update any forward-looking statements, which are based upon expectations as of the date hereof, as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

About Cumulus Media
Cumulus Media (NASDAQ: CMLS) is an audio-first media company delivering premium content to over a quarter billion people every month — wherever and whenever they want it. Cumulus Media engages listeners with high-quality local programming through 404 owned-and-operated radio stations across 85 markets; delivers nationally-syndicated sports, news, talk, and entertainment programming from iconic brands including the NFL, the NCAA, the Masters, CNN, the AP, the Academy of Country Music Awards, and many other world-class partners across more than 9,400 affiliated stations through Westwood One, the largest audio network in America; and inspires listeners through the Cumulus Podcast Network, its rapidly growing network of original podcasts that are smart, entertaining and thought-provoking. Cumulus Media provides advertisers with personal connections, local impact and national reach through broadcast and on-demand digital, mobile, social, and voice-activated platforms, as well as integrated digital marketing services, powerful influencers, full-service audio solutions, industry-leading research and insights, and live event experiences. Cumulus Media is the only audio media company to provide marketers with local and national advertising performance guarantees. For more information visit

Non-GAAP Financial Measures

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. Consolidated adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (“Adjusted EBITDA” or “EBITDA”) is the financial metric by which management and the chief operating decision maker allocate resources of the Company and analyze the performance of the Company as a whole. 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 the funding of our non-operating expenses including debt service and acquisitions. In addition, consolidated Adjusted EBITDA is a key metric for purposes of calculating and determining our compliance with certain covenants contained in our Refinanced Credit Agreement.

In determining Adjusted EBITDA, we exclude the following from net (loss) income: interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization, stock-based compensation expense, gain or loss on the exchange, sale, or disposal of any assets or stations or early extinguishment of debt, local marketing agreement fees, restructuring costs, expenses relating to acquisitions and divestitures, non-routine legal expenses incurred in connection with certain litigation matters, and non-cash impairments of assets, if any. Adjusted EBITDA margin is calculated by dividing Adjusted EBITDA by net revenue.

Management believes that Adjusted EBITDA, with and excluding impact of political advertising, 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, along with Adjusted EBITDA margin, for comparing the operational and financial performance among media companies. Management has also observed that Adjusted EBITDA, with and excluding impact of political advertising, is routinely utilized to evaluate and negotiate the potential purchase price for media companies. Given the relevance to our overall value, management believes that investors consider these metrics to be extremely useful.

The Company presents revenue, excluding impact of political revenue. As a result of the cyclical nature of the electoral system and the seasonality of the related political revenue, management believes presenting net revenue, excluding impact of political revenue, provides useful information to investors about the Company’s revenue growth comparable from period to period.

The Company presents the non-GAAP financial measure net debt which is total debt principal, gross, less cash and cash equivalents. The Company also presents the non-GAAP financial measure net leverage, which is defined in our Senior Credit Facility as net debt divided by Adjusted EBITDA. Management believes that net leverage and net debt are important measures to monitor leverage and evaluate the balance sheet. Additionally, net leverage is required for complying with certain covenants under the Company’s credit agreements.

We refer to Adjusted EBITDA, with and excluding the impact of political advertising, Adjusted EBITDA margin, net revenue, excluding impact of political revenue, net debt and net leverage as the “Non-GAAP Financial Measures.” Non-GAAP Financial Measures should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute for net income, net revenue, 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, Non-GAAP Financial Measures may be defined or calculated differently by other companies and, therefore, comparability may be limited.

For further information, please contact:
Cumulus Media Inc.
Investor Relations Department

Supplemental Financial Data and Reconciliations

Cumulus Media Inc.
Unaudited Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations
(Dollars in thousands)

  Three Months Ended Year Ended
  December 31,
 December 31,
 December 31,
 December 31,
Net revenue $251,270  $252,304  $953,506  $916,467 
Operating expenses:        
Content costs  99,685   98,382   357,478   358,691 
Selling, general & administrative expenses  98,048   100,457   383,375   376,832 
Depreciation and amortization  14,983   13,749   56,386   53,545 
Local marketing agreement fees  13   13   44   1,075 
Corporate expenses  11,060   10,337   47,980   55,029 
Stock-based compensation expense  1,517   1,404   6,229   5,191 
Restructuring costs  1,399   7,657   8,218   14,604 
(Gain) loss on sale of assets or stations  (452)  3,044   (1,537)  (17,616)
Impairment of intangible assets  15,544      15,544    
Total operating expenses  241,797   235,043   873,717   847,351 
Operating income  9,473   17,261   79,789   69,116 
Non-operating (expense) income:        
Interest expense  (17,402)  (16,020)  (64,890)  (67,847)
Gain on early extinguishment of debt  2,620   20,000   4,496   20,000 
Other income (expense), net  294   (677)  210   (1,009)
Total non-operating (expense) income, net  (14,488)  3,303   (60,184)  (48,856)
(Loss) income before income taxes  (5,015)  20,564   19,605   20,260 
Income tax benefit (expense)  4,961   (2,925)  (3,370)  (2,982)
Net (loss) income $(54) $17,639  $16,235  $17,278 

The following tables reconcile net (loss) income, the most directly comparable financial measure calculated and presented in accordance with GAAP, to Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA margin for the periods presented herein (dollars in thousands):        

As Reported Three Months Ended
December 31, 2022
 Three Months Ended
December 31, 2021
GAAP net (loss) income $(54) $17,639 
Income tax (benefit) expense  (4,961)  2,925 
Non-operating expense, including net interest expense  17,108   16,697 
Local marketing agreement fees  13   13 
Depreciation and amortization  14,983   13,749 
Stock-based compensation expense  1,517   1,404 
(Gain) loss on sale or disposal of assets or stations  (452)  3,044 
Impairment of intangible assets  15,544    
Restructuring costs  1,399   7,657 
Non-routine legal expenses  21   41 
Gain on early extinguishment of debt  (2,620)  (20,000)
Franchise taxes  219   72 
Adjusted EBITDA $42,717  $43,241 
Net revenue $251,270  $252,304 
Adjusted EBITDA margin  17.0%  17.1%

As Reported Year Ended
December 31, 2022
 Year Ended
December 31, 2021
GAAP net income $16,235  $17,278 
Income tax expense  3,370   2,982 
Non-operating expense, including net interest expense  64,680   68,856 
Local marketing agreement fees  44   1,075 
Depreciation and amortization  56,386   53,545 
Stock-based compensation expense  6,229   5,191 
Gain on sale or disposal of assets or stations  (1,537)  (17,616)
Impairment of intangible assets  15,544    
Restructuring costs  8,218   14,604 
Non-routine legal expenses  544   8,257 
Gain on early extinguishment of debt  (4,496)  (20,000)
Franchise taxes  765   685 
Adjusted EBITDA $165,982  $134,857 
Net revenue $953,506  $916,467 
Adjusted EBITDA margin  17.4%  14.7%

The following tables reconcile the as reported net revenue and as reported Adjusted EBITDA, both including and excluding the impact of political, for the periods presented herein (dollars in thousands):

  Three Months Ended
December 31, 2022
 Three Months Ended
December 31, 2021
As reported net revenue $251,270  $252,304 
Political revenue  (8,298)  (1,391)
As reported net revenue, excluding impact of political revenue $242,972  $250,913 

  Three Months Ended
December 31, 2022
 Three Months Ended
December 31, 2021
As reported Adjusted EBITDA $42,717  $43,241 
Political EBITDA  (7,469)  (1,252)
As reported Adjusted EBITDA, excluding impact of political EBITDA $35,248  $41,989 

  Year Ended
December 31, 2022
 Year Ended
December 31, 2021
As reported net revenue $953,506  $916,467 
Political revenue  (18,425)  (4,656)
As reported net revenue, excluding impact of political revenue $935,081  $911,811 

  Year Ended
December 31, 2022
 Year Ended
December 31, 2021
As reported Adjusted EBITDA $165,982  $134,857 
Political EBITDA  (16,583)  (4,190)
As reported Adjusted EBITDA, excluding impact of political EBITDA $149,399  $130,667 

The following table sets forth a reconciliation of our total debt principal, gross, cash and cash equivalents, and Adjusted EBITDA to net leverage for the periods presented herein (dollars in thousands):

  As of December 31,
   2022   2021 
Total debt principal, gross $719,379  $805,935 
Less: Cash and cash equivalents  (107,433)  (177,028)
Total debt principal, net $611,946  $628,907 

  Year Ended December 31,
  2022 2021
Adjusted EBITDA $165,982 $134,857
Net leverage 3.7x 4.7x

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