Technology

Eric Boyko: Stingray radios are catching up on lost ground

Eric Boyko, the president, co-founder and CEO of Montreal-based company Stingray (Photo: courtesy)

Radio advertising revenues are back. Stingray radio stations are increasingly approaching a time when they will have recouped the revenue lost during the pandemic, believes Eric Boyko, the president, co-founder and CEO of the Montreal-based company.

Revenues from radio operations, which include some 100 stations in seven Canadian provinces, increased 78.8% to $ 29.2 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2022, ended June 30. “These are excellent results,” enthuses the manager in an interview.

The pandemic has severely affected radio advertising revenues as several local advertisers have been forced to suspend their promotional activities. The stations in Ontario were particularly affected, specifies the co-founder.

In the three-month period ended at the end of June, revenues were still 32% below the threshold from two years ago. The Montreal company wants to recover all of the revenues generated by its stations two years ago. Eric Boyko says that in recent weeks the gap is approaching 15%. “From week to week, we are getting closer to normalcy. “

Results below expectations

The recovery in the radio industry benefited Stingray in the first quarter, but the music distribution specialist and radio station owner nonetheless reported revenues and profits below investors’ expectations for this period.

The Montreal-based company increased revenues 23.9% to $ 64.8 million. Analysts had expected revenues of $ 70 million, according to forecasts collected by financial data firm Refinitiv.

Adjusted earnings per share, for its part, fell 11.1% to 16 cents, due in part to lower amounts received in wage subsidies. Analysts were forecasting adjusted earnings per share of 18 cents.

The results are lower than expected by Matthew Lee of Canaccord Genuity. In a note, he attributed this discrepancy to the effect of currency and declining wage subsidies.

The decrease in the amounts received in wage subsidies is in fact good news, notes Mr. Boyko. Stingray received approximately $ 2.5 million in salary assistance, compared to $ 10 million in the same period last year. “It disappears quickly, because the income comes back,” he explains. The good news is that when the income comes back, you make a profit. ”

By early morning, the stock was down 11.48%, or 91 cents, to $ 7.02 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

A text by Stéphane Rolland

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