Shares of radio broadcasting company Entercom Communications (ETM -6.82%) skyrocketed Wednesday, rising as much as 23.7% after the company's second-quarter earnings release. The stock finished the trading day up about 20%.
The stock's gain was probably fueled by CEO David Field's mention in the company's second-quarter press release that revenue trends are improving going into the second half of the year.
Entercom reported non-GAAP earnings per share of $0.24, down from $0.26 in the year-ago quarter. On average, analysts were expecting non-GAAP EPS of $0.25. Revenue was $372.1 million, down from $405.7 million in the year-ago quarter. The consensus analyst forecast was for revenue of $379.9 million.
Entercom's year-over-year revenue decline was "exacerbated by the loss of $12 million in revenues from [United States Traffic Network (USTN)]," Field said.
Beyond the quarter's financial results, Field said the company "signed a definitive agreement with Bonneville to complete our last required station divestitures, successfully launched the new Entercom Audio Network with strong early revenues, terminated our painful relationship with United States Traffic Network, achieved rapid growth on our burgeoning Radio.com platform, and delivered a 5% reduction in Q2 expenses as we realize our merger-related synergies."
Helped by the company's strategic execution, management is optimistic about the second half of the year. Admitting that second-quarter revenue was soft, Field said "revenue performance is improving and we are currently pacing down 2% in the third quarter excluding the impact of USTN." Even better, Field said Q4 revenue is "pacing up 3% on an unadjusted basis."