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Fisher Communications Inc. Reports Operating Results (10-Q)
Posted by: gurufocus (IP Logged)
Date: May 11, 2009 08:08PM

Fisher Communications Inc. (FSCI) filed Quarterly Report for the period ended 2009-03-31. Fisher Communications Inc. is a media and communications company engaged primarily in television and radio broadcasting operations television programming development and production and satellite teleport operations. The company is engaged in real estate investment and management and flour milling and bakery products distribution. Also the company is seeking to sell our flour milling and bakery products distribution businesses. Fisher Communications Inc. has a market cap of $88.9 million; its shares were traded at around $10.17 with a P/E ratio of 3.9 and P/S ratio of 0.5. Fisher Communications Inc. had an annual average earning growth of 72.5% over the past 5 years.

Highlight of Business Operations:

Repurchase of Senior Notes. In the first quarter of 2009, we repurchased $15.15 million aggregate principal amount of our 8.625% senior notes due 2014, for total consideration of $13.05 million in cash plus accrued interest of $0.5 million. A gain on extinguishment of debt was recorded net of a charge for related unamortized debt issuance costs of $308,000, resulting in a net gain of approximately $1.8 million.

Dividends on Safeco Corporation Common Stock. In the first quarter of 2008, we recorded dividends on our shares of Safeco Corporation common stock in the amount of $921,000. No dividend income was recorded in the first quarter of 2009, as we sold our remaining shares of Safeco Corporation common stock in June and July of 2008 resulting in pre-tax net proceeds of approximately $153.4 million.

Termination of National Advertising Representation Agreement. In April 2008, we terminated the agreement with our national advertising representation firm. The successor firm will satisfy our contractual termination obligation to the predecessor firm with no cash payment made by us. In the second quarter of 2008, we recognized a non-cash charge of $5.0 million to selling, general and administrative expenses, and we are amortizing the related net liability as a non-cash benefit over the five-year term of the new agreement. We recognized a $365,000 benefit due to this amortization in the first quarter of 2009.

We completed negotiations for new retransmission consent agreements with over 50 distribution partners in the fourth quarter of 2008 and the first quarter of 2009. Retransmission revenue increased 39% from the first quarter of 2008, not including expected retransmission fees of approximately $950,000 to $1 million not recorded in the first quarter attributable to contracts for which key financial terms have been negotiated but which remained unexecuted at quarter end. For each of these contracts, we expect to record the retransmission fees for the period from January 1, 2009 through the date of execution as revenue in the quarter the agreement is executed. We currently expect that most of these remaining contracts will be executed in the second quarter of 2009, although there can be no assurances as to the actual timing of the execution of these agreements.

Read the The complete Report

FSCI is in the portfolios of Bill Gates of Cascade Investment, LLC.

Stocks Discussed: FSCI,
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