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|New York Times CEO Discusses Q4 2010 Results 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 projected. Some of the factors that may cause them to differ are included in our 2009 10 K. Thank you Paula and good morning everyone. Our fourth quarter and full year results reflects 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 improve 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 cost improved during that period. Last year s progress on the print advertising front and a 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 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, the advertising marketplace remained volatile, as the 11% increase in digital advertising could not fully offset the 7% decline in our print advertising. We were able to reduce the company s operating expenses before depreciation, amortization and severance in the quarter by 2% or $10 million even in the face of very tough comparable numbers, resulting from 2009 s steep expense cuts. The cost decline in the quarter was 5% on a GAAP basis. We maintained our relentless focus on managing cost in the fourth quarter to mitigate the effects of revenue declines on our operating performance. In addition to the operating profit metrics I mentioned earlier, on a GAAP basis, we reported operating profit from continuing operations of $112 million in the fourth quarter compared with $136 million in the same period of 2009. And for the full year, our operating profit totaled $234 million, more than triple the $74 million we ve reported in 2009. Diluted earnings per share from continuing operations excluding severance expense and special items, were $0.46 in the fourth quarter compared with $0.44 in the same period of 2009. On a GAAP basis we reported diluted EPS of $0.44 from continuing operations in the quarter compared with $0.48 in the fourth quarter 2009 period. Our Digital offerings continue to gain momentum in the fourth quarter. Separately in October we launched our expanded content NY Times App for the iPad, which fills on our initial editors choice app and offer access to more than 25 sections of Times content with an impressive array of videos and photos. The expanded content iPad app has received stellar reviews so far and advertisers such as Mercedes Benz and Bank of America have leveraged our ability to create rich advertising experiences that build on the unique capabilities of the device. As a result, we have multiple commitments from advertisers well into 2011. We are seeing a very wide range of advertisers that are committing to the iPad app from luxury to technology to entertainment. We have worked closely with those clients to deliver innovative engaging advertisers for Moncler Gloves Men advertising that readers react to and remember. We remain focused on diversifying our revenue streams and strengthening our digital businesses. The e reader application business has proven to be a vibrant market where consumers are willing to pay for quality content through an immersive reading experience similar to that of a print newspaper. Today some of the e reader platforms that offer content from our publications include the Nook, Sony Reader, Kindle, Kobo Reader and our PC and Mac reading applications. We charge across all of these platforms and we have excelled in these customer monetization efforts. Another one of our strategic focuses is managing our asset portfolio. Early in the fourth quarter, we made $4 million investment in Ongo, a personalized consumer news service that allows users to read and share digital news from multiple publishers on a single interface, with similar contributions coming from the Washington Post and Gannett. This subscription based service launched just last week and now features top stories from the New York Times and the Boston Globe as well as content from a variety of other leading news providers. Ongo is accessible through any major web browser on computers, smartphones and tablets and offers a variety of convenient customization features that we believe will appeal to our readers. Now let me offer some more depth on our fourth quarter revenues. Total revenues for the company declined 3% with advertising revenues down 3%, circulation revenues down 4% and other revenues up 3%. Steady growth in digital advertising revenues, which rose 11% partially, offset a 7% decrease in print advertising Moncler Vests For Women revenues. Online advertising revenue continued to its share of revenue and made up 26% of our total ad revenues in the quarter, up from 23% in the fourth quarter of 2009. At the News Media Group which includes the New York Times, New England and the regional media groups, continued strength in digital advertising which was up 20% could not offset the 7% decrease in print advertising. The Group s total advertising revenues which declined 3% year over year in the quarter increased 1% in October, 4% in November and declined 13% in December. A large amount of expected year end ad spending did not materialize in December compounded by difficult 2009 comparison numbers. Digital advertising remained resilient led by growth in international display. In the fourth quarter Moncler Tags we also saw gains in retail display as well as two of the major classified advertising categories, real estate and automotives. By total advertising category, national and retail revenues were each down 2% and classified was down 8%. Within the classified area, recruitment was down 1%, real estate declined 6% and automotive was down 15%. Breaking down the News Media Group into its component properties, at the Times Media Group, advertising revenues were down 3% in the quarter as growth in digital display and classified advertising were more than offset by print declines. Aggregate classified advertising at the Times Media Group decreased in all three major categories, automotive, real estate and recruitment. But retail advertising revenues showed positive growth for the quarter in both print and digital. Aggregate national advertising was down 3% and the national print ad categories where we saw the largest declines were telecommunications where wireless carriers reduced spending and we were faced with tough 2009 comparison numbers; financial services as bank spending declines offset impressive gains from investment firms and insurance companies; and national automotive, where domestic manufacturers reduced spending and the category was up against difficult 2009 comparisons. The national print ad categories where we saw the largest gains were hotels, based on substantial increases from a variety of properties and travel destinations, books which saw a strong growth from publishers; and international fashion driven by gains from top designers.
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