New York Times Co Class A NYT
Q4 2010 Earnings Call Transcript

Transcript Call Date 02/03/2011

Operator: Good day, and welcome to The New York Times Fourth Quarter 2010 Earnings Conference Call. Today's call is being recorded. A question-and-answer session will follow today's presentation.

For opening remarks and introductions, I'd like to turn the conference over to Ms. Paula Schwartz, Director of Investor Relations. Please go ahead.

Paula Schwartz - Director, IR: Thank you and good morning, everyone. Welcome to our fourth quarter 2010 earnings conference call. We have several members of our senior management team here to discuss our results with you including, Janet Robinson, President and CEO; Jim Follo, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer; Scott Heekin-Canedy, President and General Manager of the Times; and Martin Nisenholtz, Senior Vice President of Digital Operations.

All of the comparisons on this conference call will be for the fourth quarter of 2010 to the fourth quarter of 2009 unless otherwise stated. Our discussion will include forward-looking statements and our actual results may differ from those predicted. Some of the factors that may cause them to differ are included in our 2009 10-K.

Our presentation will also include non-GAAP financial measures, and we have provided reconciliations to the most comparable GAAP measures in our earnings press release, which is available on our corporate website at,

Now, I will turn the call over to Janet Robinson.

Janet L. Robinson - President and CEO: Thank you, Paula and good morning, everyone. Our fourth quarter and full year results reflect both the transformation our industry is undergoing and the choppy form the economic recovery is taking.

During this time we took decisive actions, as demonstrated by the fact that our operating profit before depreciation, amortization, severance and special items increased 20% for the year compared with 2009, with slightly lower overall revenues offset by a greater improvement in cost savings. The year did proved more challenging as it progressed, with operating profit on that same basis declining 7% in the fourth quarter, as revenues declined slightly more than costs improved during that period.

Last year's progress on the print advertising front and its steady double-digit growth in our digital advertising numbers are proof of our enduring brand strength. While we ended the quarter and the year slightly down in overall advertising revenue, 2010 provided significant evolution and encouragement for our Company in many ways. We are well positioned to capitalize on the digitization of our content in the coming year, and we remain confident in our new online pay strategy and the Company's overall future.

In the fourth quarter, we continued our focus on core initiatives, including maintaining our brand promise of high-quality journalism, our most coveted asset; expanding and preparing to further monetize our digital offerings, with the impending introduction of the pay model and the very positive reception to our new NYTimes app for the iPad; rigorously controlling our expenses, as we identify areas for continued cost re-engineering even against the backdrop of difficult cost comparisons; improving our liquidity, partially through the $225 million debt transaction we completed in the quarter and our growing cash balance; and managing our asset portfolio to maintain its alignment with our core operations.

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